Ask Jack Jack Ehnes

Do community colleges pay into the same CalSTRS program as regular public school systems?

Yes, participation in the California State Teachers’ Retirement System is mandatory for full-time California public school preK-12 teachers, community college instructors and public school administrators; part-time educators can choose to become members.

For part-time educators such as part-time, substitute, adjunct or temporary educators, CalSTRS administers the Cash Balance Benefit Program as an alternative to Social Security. Your eligibility to participate in the Cash Balance program is determined by your basis of employment, rather than the actual number of hours or days you work, and whether your employer offers the program.

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