The superintendent of Owensboro Public Schools says the pension proposal unveiled by Kentucky’s Republican leaders is second-rate compared to the current retirement system.
Dr. Nick Brake says he fears the reforms, if enacted, would make it harder for the state to attract quality teachers.
"Many people that go into teaching don't make, from a salary standpoint, as much as people in the market with the same level of education that might be going into other professions,” said Brake, “The tradeoff is always that you have a handsome benefit package and a retirement program that you can count on."
Brake says he doesn’t like the proposal to put new teachers into a defined contribution plan and move current teachers into the same 401(k)-style plan after 27 years of service. He says the current system is designed to incentivize educators to work longer, and less generous benefits will prompt a wave of retirements.
The General Assembly will meet in special session by the end of the year to consider turning the proposed changes into law.