Comparing Teacher Benefits To Other Professions
Teachers do enjoy more attractive benefit packages than other professionals, a study by the progressive-leaning think tank Economic Policy Institute found. But the EPI analysis also concluded that teachers are still paid less than what workers with similar skills and education levels make even when factoring in benefits.
Public school teachers compensation were 11% lower than that of comparable workers in 2015, the EPI found. The wage gap increases to 17% when just comparing wages.
Other studies, however, claim the wage gap is overstated and that despite salaries lagging in some states, teachers are not dramatically underpaid overall.
“The average teacher already enjoys market-level wages plus retirement benefits vastly exceeding those of private-sector workers,” wrote Andrew Biggs, resident scholar at the conservative think tank American Enterprise Institute, and Jason Richwine, a public policy analyst in Washington D.C.
The National Education Association reports that the average public school teacher salary for 2016-17 was $59,660. But teacher pay varies significantly by state, ranging from a high of $81,902 in New York to a low of $42,925 in Mississippi.
Attract The Best Employees
In the current market, the most qualified substitute talent will be more likely to work at districts which offer top wages and benefits. Despite the significant expenditure, quality staffing has an expected return on investment, since personnel forms the foundation for your schools and their mission.
Want Even More Information On Health Insurance Abroad
Our friends at GoAbroad have produced this incredibly comprehensive resource for future travelers with questions about health insurance abroad. In it, youll find details on how your destination influences your coverage, the difference between travel insurance and international medical insurance, and considerations to make based on different types of travel .
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How Can I Make A Claim
The pandemic has left thousands of holidaymakers out of pocket. If you had a trip booked that you now cant take, you might need to make a claim yourself.
Insurers will only pay out for costs that cant be refunded by travel or accommodation providers, so you should get in touch with them first. If you approach insurers with a claim before exploring the refund route, they will want you to do that before you can progress further.
Next, make a list of all the non-refundable costs you want to claim for. Not just hotels and flights, but transfers, tours and excursions.
After that, youre ready to contact your insurer. Weve gathered the claims numbers for more than 40 travel insurance providers in the table below. Click the name of the insurer to see our review of its service and find more details about how to make a claim.
If we dont have a review, contact your insurer directly for more information.
- Find out more: claiming on your travel insurance
Local Plan Coverage Of A Retired Teachers Spouse After The Retirees Death
Note: When thinking about coverage, you should always consider the needs of your spouse and/or dependent children in the event that you should predecease them.
When it is time to enroll for coverage with your local community, you should ask your benefits coordinator several questions about the coverage of your spouse. Specifically, you should determine your local communitys policy regarding the coverage of your spouse in the event that you predecease him or her. Questions you should ask your local benefits coordinator include:
- Can I enroll my spouse at the time that I enroll myself?
- If I do not enroll my spouse now, can I enroll him or her at some point in the future?
- Does my retirement option have any bearing on the eligibility of my spouse to enroll in health care insurance?
- If I predecease my spouse and he or she is covered at the time of my death, can he or she continue coverage as a survivor?
- If I predecease my spouse and he or she is not enrolled at the time of my death, can he or she enroll as a survivor?
- How much will it cost my spouse for health care coverage?
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Three Health Insurance Options For Retiring Teachers
One of the big problems I hear soon-to-be retiring teachers talk about is how are they are going to retain health insurance coverage.
They have been covered under a group policy for their entire career, paying different amounts based on their coverage choice and district contract, but now they face the hurdle of health insurance post-employment.
For teachers in Illinois, they have been paying into the THIS program each paycheck. This allows their premiums in the TRIP program to be reduced due to all members subsidizing them throughout their career. However, the THIS program is not meant to be a fully-fledged health insurance offering it is meant to be an add-on to Medicare.
But what about teachers retiring before they hit Medicare eligibility?
For most people, Medicare eligibility starts at age 65. However, most teachers will retire before that age, even as soon as in their 50s. So what are the options?
Image by 401 2013
1. Go on a spouses insurance plan For teachers who are married, chances are their spouses may still be employed when they retire. If there is a group health insurance plan available through their spouses employer, then they can add themselves to it and receive coverage.
One thing to note is when this retired teacher reaches age 65, they will need to apply for Medicare regardless of if they stay on this group plan. If there is a delay in filing, there may be permanent penalties assessed to monthly premiums.
Tax savings all around!
What Does Omicron Mean For Insurance
The biggest difference is the return of the red list. Travelling to one of these countries will require an expensive quarantine hotel stay upon return, and youre very unlikely to be able to get insurance to visit them.
If you have a trip and insurance already, its unlikely to fund the quarantine hotel. But with a complete insurance policy, you may be able to cancel your trip and claim back any lost funds.
As for trips elsewhere, youll need to check their current entry requirements. So far Israel, Japan and Morocco have closed their borders to tourists. Other countries now have stricter testing rules.
If youre now required to quarantine upon arrival, you likely wont be able to cancel and claim on your insurance, though you may be able to postpone your trip if your travel provider is flexible .
- Find out more:where can I go on holiday without quarantine?
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How Do I Get Health Insurance When I Teach English Abroad
July 19, 2021
In some cases, health insurance will be provided by your employer in others, you may be responsible for procuring your own insurance. This will vary from country-to-country, and in some cases from job-to-job and school-to-school. You should always inquire about health insurance when considering teaching in particular countries and when interviewing for specific teaching positions.
Health insurance is typically provided in major Asian job markets for English teachers, including South Korea, China, Taiwan, Japan, Indonesia, Malaysia, Vietnam, Hong Kong, and often, though not always, in Thailand. In some cases, you may be required to pay into your health insurance this will typically deducted from your pay check each month and usually amounts to $25-$50 a month.
In less developed nations like Cambodia and Mongolia, insurance may be provided by internationally managed language schools, but it’s not necessarily the norm.
Most Americans teaching English in major western European nations like Spain and Italy will be responsible for their own health insurance if they are working illegally . In nations where Americans can receive a work visa and pay taxes like Germany, Russia and Turkey, there is a much higher chance that insurance will be provided part of the national health care, but this is definitely a matter that you should clarify with any employer during your interview.
What Should I Look For When Im Buying Travel Insurance
When searching for a policy, make sure you look for the following things:
- Coronavirus medical and repatriation cover To cover you if youre infected when youre away.
- Coronavirus cancellation cover Youll need this if you want to be able to claim on insurance for refunds if Covid stops you travelling for any reason. Our ratings will tell you how much Covid cover an insurer has.
- Scheduled airline failure insurance To cover you if your airline goes bust.
- Excesses This is what youll pay towards what your insurer pays out. Youll need to be able to afford them if youre claiming.
Which? recommends getting the following levels of cover:
- Emergency medical cover £5m worldwide
- Cancellation, curtailment and missed departure £2,000 or the value of your holiday
- Personal belongings and money £1,500
- Personal liability £1m
Find out more:flight cancellations and compensation
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Along With Insurance Costs Pension Debt Eats Into Teacher Take
The amount public schools have been paying teachers has dipped slightly or stayed static over the past 20 years. But what has increased dramatically over that time is the amount they pay for insurance and retirement/savings.
This data is a bit misleading because it makes it seem like teachers are benefiting from larger contributions to their retirements.
But a 2016 analysis from Chad Aldeman of the Bellwether Education Partners shows that the money schools are spending to pay for teachers retirement and savings doesnt actually go into the pockets of teachers.
For every $10 states and districts contribute to teacher pension plans, $7 goes toward paying down past pension debt, and only $3 goes toward benefits for current teachers, Aldeman writes. In other words, current teachers are having to pay for the pensions of an older generation, which is a wider demographic problem that goes beyond education.
Aldeman argues that the increasing costs of insurance and pension plans are eating into teachers take-home pay, while not providing better benefits.
Valuing Benefits: The Cost To Employers Vs The Value To Workers
Richwine and Biggs selectively alternate between the cost of benefits to employers and the value to workers. They inappropriately equate the latter with the often much higher cost to individuals of obtaining equivalent benefits.
When assessing the value of fringe benefits, researchers may be interested in the cost to employers the value to employees or the cost of purchasing similar benefits in the private market. Large private employers and the government are often able to provide insurance and pension benefits at much lower cost than individuals can purchase the same benefits for themselves, which is one of the main reasons these benefits are provided by employers in the first place .
Large employers and government entities are better equipped to assume many risks than are individuals because individual longevity and medical risks can be reduced or even eliminated by pooling. This is a basic tenet of insurance: Costs fall as pool size increases. This asymmetry, plus economies of scale in administration and the elimination of adverse-selection problems that drive up costs in the individual insurance market , make employer-provided pension and insurance benefits a very cost-effective component of employee compensation for large employers. That is, the value to workers is greater than the cost to employers.
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Do Teachers Get Paid During The Summer
Teachers can typically work with their school district to take their 9 month teaching annual contract and spread it over 12 months of pay periods. This allows them to still receive the same paycheck every month while they enjoy the entire summer off with their families or friends. For many teachers, summer is when they choose to do professional development or pursue additional education to advance their education. I
The Deal For Teachers
Non-salary benefits are a critical part of “the deal” for teachers. Teaching used to pay pretty well relative to average wages for college graduates, but this advantage has evaporated, a topic we take up in the next lesson. It can be very hard for teachers to make ends meet, especially in the densely-populated areas of the state where property values are high. Districts do what they can to make the “deal” work out. For example, in some districts it is quite common for teachers to claim all of their “sick days” each year, not necessarily for reasons of illness. Tolerance of teacher absenteeism is not universal the culture of each school and district determines whether “mental health breaks” are part of the “deal” or an abuse of the system.
Do you know where to find the formal benefits policies for teachers in your district? It might be difficult to find. Check with your district office to find a copy of the current teacher’s contract. Don’t be shocked if it’s a thick document!
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Cost And Method Of Payment For Medicare
Coverage for Medicare Part A is free to eligible retirees. There is a charge for Medicare Part B. Once you have established coverage with the Medicare program, the MTRS will withhold the monthly premium for your Medigap coverage.
Starting in 2007, the Medicare Part B premium is based on retirees income: In the past, all Medicare-eligible retirees paid the same premium for their Medicare Part B coverage. Starting in 2007, the Medicare Part B premium is higher for retirees whose income exceeds certain limits. The standard Medicare Part B premium in 2007 is $93.50/month. For retirees whose total earnings exceed $80,000 or $160,000 , the Part B premiums increase on a sliding scale, up to a maximum of $161.40/month for those retirees whose income exceeds $200,000 or $400,000 .
Medicare As Your Primary Health Care Coverage
Once you become eligible to receive health care coverage through Medicare, you may be required to enroll in Medicare. program or under locally provided insurance , and on whether your municipality has accepted the provisions of M.G.L. c. 32B, § 18. Please check with your local benefits coordinator or the Group Insurance Commission to see if you are required to switch to Medicare upon becoming eligible.)
If you enroll in Medicare, you may want to obtain Medigap insurance to supplement Medicares coverage. If, prior to enrolling in Medicare, you were covered under:
- the local municipalitys program, you should make arrangements with your local insurance coordinator to continue coverage through your group insurance program. The local insurance program will then serve as a supplement to Medicare. You should contact your local benefits coordinator for Medigap options.
- the RMT program, you will be required to enroll in Medicare, if eligible you should then apply for Medigap coverage through the Group Insurance Commission. For your Medigap options, contact the Group Insurance Commission .
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How Are School Districts Dealing With Rising Health Insurance Costs
The rising costs of health insurance have played a big role behind the scenes of teacher protests over the past year, taking up an ever greater share of the funds districts are able to dedicate to teacher compensation and leaving little room for raises. Health insurance premiums have exploded over the past 20 years, with healthcare provided to public school teachers serving as no exception to this trend.
One question is how districts are handling these increased costs. There is a common perception that school districts tend to pay nearly the full cost of a teacher’s premium, even including dependents. Over the past decade, however, this has not been the case.
The NCTQ Teacher Contract Database tracks the portion of health insurance premiums that traditional public school districts cover for both teachers and their dependents in the largest 100 districts in the country as well as the largest district in each state. Combined these districts employ over 800,000 teachers.
What portion of teachers’ individual health insurance premiums do districts cover?
There are 86 school districts in our database that specify the portion of the teacher’s individual premium that the district covers. The portion of the teacher’s premium that these large school districts cover on average is 92 percent. There are still 34 districts that cover 100 percent of the teacher’s individual premium.
How is the coverage of health insurance premiums changing over time?
Returning To School 101
If your school is planning in-person learning during this unique back-to-school season, there are ways to prepare. All teachers should review their health insurance policies to check what’s covered and what they’ll pay for doctor visits and COVID-19 tests. If you need to add coverage, ask your provider when you can make changes to the policy.
And if you need to use public transportation to get to school, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggests following local transit authorities for developing news and updated schedules. Furthermore, your transit authorities will usually provide guidelines on how to stay safe on public trains or buses. Know the social distancing guidelines, and always wear a face mask outside of the home.
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Consider Cobra Health Coverage
Your employer is legally required to keep you under their health care umbrella after you retire or are laid off. If you like your existing plan, this might be a good option as youll be able to keep all your current providers. That being said, COBRA has a big downside: Their premiums are significantly higher than the health care premium you paid while you were employed.
Its also important to keep in mind that COBRA only extends your coverage by 18 months. This means that if you retire several years before 65, youll still have to deal with a health care coverage gap.