The fact is many people get into teaching and their circumstances change. There are reasons to stay, and reasons to leave the profession, but because a significant percentage leave within 5 years, we need to address it upfront.
Vesting and contributions
Why is 5 years so important? Because that is the key point in time when your pension VESTS!
Vesting means you have earned enough service credit to qualify for a pension.
With many new teachers leaving with 5 years this is important to personal financial planning. Every year you work in a TRS institution you earn service credit. From every paycheck, a large amount of your earnings is deposited into a tax- preferred account. Tax-preferred means that you do not have to pay federal income tax on the money that goes in, or any interest earned on that money, until the money comes out. Your service credit is automatically added to your account.