Thinking of Retiring? Here are some tips:

    • Maintain a personal pension file of Teachers’ Pension Plan and Canada Pension Plan statements and information. Include any collective agreement provisions for retirement gratuities.  Ask CPP to send you a current pension statement.
    • Familiarize yourself with the Teachers’ Pension Plan (TPP) and attend a pension seminar. (one in your 40s, 50s and in the  year or retirement) We always offer workshops on pensions at the STA Convention, first Friday in May.
    • Visit the TPP web site (click on Teachers’ Pension Plan). Use the personalized pension estimator in the “My Account” area to estimate your pension benefit at the date of retirement.
    • Keep the TPP informed of any changes in your life (i.e. marriage, separation, divorce, death of spouse, beneficiary if no spouse, etc.).
    • Consider purchasing service from a leave of absence taken in the past 5 years.

One Year Before Retirement

    • If you have service in a teachers’ pension plan in another Canadian province/territory and did not take a refund, check with that plan as to your accrued benefits and options, including transfer to the TPP.
    • Take some time to consider your probable “lifestyle” in retirement
      • Make a budget for your interests as well as the regular day to day expenses.
      • Decide where you want to live and the type of accommodation you may need
      • Update your Will and Power of Attorney and/or Representation Agreement.
    • Start to clean out your classroom. Give away materials and units as you complete them.  Do not take them home to clutter your basement.

Four Months Before Retirement

    • Contact the Teachers’ Pension Plan for a Retirement Application Package. Send the completed application form to the TPP no later than the end of the month in which the pension is to start (preferably at least two months earlier) to ensure prompt pension payment.

One Month Before Retirement

    • Find out from us at the STA when the annual retirement dinner dance is, and plan to attend! It’s time to celebrate your career.
    • At least thirty days before the date of retirement send in your letter of resignation to your school board, with a copy to the STA.
    • Check with the School Board Office to see when your current health benefits end to ensure continuous coverage.
    • Invite newer teachers to a resources day and have them take away units and materials that you will not need in your new life.

At Retirement

    • Join the Surrey Retired Teachers’ Association,, and plan to attend the “To Hell with the Bell” breakfast on the first day of school in September.
    • Join the BC Retired Teachers’ Association 1-877-683-2243 or go to the web site at  This will give you updated pensions and other information on retirement.
    • Contact the BCRTA re starting/continuing Medoc travel health insurance.  They also have home, medical and Long Term Care Insurance.
    • Apply to the BCTF for Associate Membership. The BCTF will send a copy of TEACHER to your home.
    • Maintain membership in the BC Regulation Branch as practicing member if you intend to teach or work as a teacher on call after retirement. See
    • Register with Fair Pharmacare for healthcare benefits. This may help with your extended health needs.  See: or call: 1 (800) 663-7100
    • Enjoy being able to:
      • Read the whole paper everyday
      • Take vacations at off season times and rates.
      • Volunteer time to your favorite organizations.
      • Learn new things for your own pleasure.
      • Not have bells run your day. (Turn off your alarm!)

Additional Pension Info

    • Six months before age 60, if you are not working, consider applying for your Canada Pension Plan pension. For an application kit, visit the CPP web site at or visit a Canada Access Centre.
    • Six months before age 65, apply for Old Age Security. For an application kit, visit the OAS web site at or visit a Canada Access Centre.

Organizations and Phone Numbers

BCTF 1 (800) 663-9163
Teachers’ Pension Plan 1 (800) 665-6770
BC Retired Teachers’ Association 1 (877) 683-2243
BC Teacher Regulation Branch 1 (800) 555-3684
Pacific Blue Cross 1 (877) 722-2583
GreenShield 1 (888) 711-1119
Medical Services Plan 1 (800) 663-7100
Pharmacare 1 (800) 663-7100
OAP & CPP 1 (800) 277-9914

Retirement Handout (click to download)