Under RC 3307.35(B), a former teacher receiving retirement benefits from the State Teachers Retirement System (STRS) may be employed again as a teacher in the public schools. Teachers that choose to work in a public position within the first two months of retirement forfeit their monthly retirement benefits for the months worked. In the past, STRS has held that the amount of compensation paid to the retiree has no impact on whether the teacher loses their retirement benefits. In other words, retirees who volunteered their services were subject to the same two-month restriction as those who received compensation.

On March 23, 2015, Senate Bill 42 made changes to RC 3307.35 that now allows teachers to volunteer with the district they retired from in the first two months of retirement without penalty, so long as they are volunteering in a different position than the one they held when they retired.

In a recent newsletter, STRS provides the example of a retired teacher who volunteers after retirement by reading to an elementary school class once a week. STRS states that the teacher would not be prohibited from receiving retirement benefits for the first two months of retirement. However, if the retiree’s only position before retirement was as a teacher, the retiree could not volunteer as a teacher in the first two months of retirement without forfeiting their retirement benefits. STRS states this would be the case even if the teacher changed the class or grade level they taught upon rehire.

A copy of STRS’ newsletter appears online.  If you have specific questions about STRS reemployment restrictions, contact STRS at 1-888-227-7877. If you have general questions about the rehire retire process, please see OSBA’s fact sheet on The procedural requirements for rehiring retirees or contact OSBA’s division of legal services.

Posted by Sara Clark on 5/14/2015