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5001 Hiring of Retired School Employees

The district shall recruit, select and employ the best-qualified individuals as employees. The district may employ persons retired from the Teachers’ Retirement System (TRS), the School Employees’ Retirement System (SERS) or the Public Employees’ Retirement System (PERS). A retired employee shall only be rehired pursuant to this district policy.  

All retirees of TRS, SERS or PERS may work an annual threshold of eight hundred sixty-seven (867) hours per year while receiving retirement benefits. The annual threshold for TRS Plan 1 retirees is calculated per fiscal year.  All other plans are calculated per calendar year. Qualified hours are determined by whether the retiree works in an eligible position as defined by RCW 41.32.010(48) or by the Department of Retirement Systems (DRS). 

District Responsibilities 

Until August 1, 2020, the district may employ teachers in TRS Plan 2 or 3 who have retired under the alternate early retirement provisions of RCW 41.32.765(3)(b) or RCW 41.32.875(3)(b). Such employment is subject to the following conditions: 1) One calendar month must have elapsed since the retiree’s accrual date; 2) the retiree must be employed exclusively as either a substitute teacher as defined in RCW 41.32.010(48)(a) or in an instructional capacity (as opposed to an administrative or supervisory capacity); and 3) the district must compensate its substitute teachers at a rate that is at least 85% of the full daily amount allocated by the state to the district for substitute teacher compensation. 

The district shall abide by the following process when considering a retiree for employment: 

  1. The decision to hire a retired applicant is made after a vacant position is advertised for an extended period of time (at least 3 weeks) and the best, qualified applicant is a retired applicant. The hiring manager submits rationale for the recommendation of the retired applicant and upon Human Resources’ approval, the position is offered.
  2. All applicant(s) shall be evaluated and considered equally. The district shall select the candidate who best meets the needs of the district.
  3. There shall be no prearranged employment agreement or commitment to rehire an employee after retirement. Mere inquiries about post-retirement employment do not constitute an agreement.
  4. The district shall document a justifiable need for choosing the retiree and retain records in Human Resources.
  5. The district shall provide the retiree with the same terms and conditions of employment as other appointees or employees in comparable positions unless State law provides otherwise, including but not limited to, sick-leave cash-out.
  6. The district shall report the number of hours worked by the retiree to DRS.

Retired Employee Responsibilities 

The following conditions of employment shall apply to retirees that are re-employed: 

  1. Retired applicants shall disclose to the district whether they are retired from a Washington state retirement plan.
  2. Employees must satisfy the DRS requirement for separation and retirement from service prior to accepting a retire/rehire position with the district.
  3. Retirees are subject to the same collective bargaining membership as other employees.
  4. Retirees are responsible for tracking service hours during post-retirement employment among multiple employers that participate in TRS, PERS or SERS systems.