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Old 08-19-2011, 09:36 AM
 
Location: Forest, Mississippi
9 posts, read 18,923 times
Reputation: 10

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My children and I have visited Maine twice in recent years and completely fell in love with everything we saw and experienced. Now that my two oldest sons are in college, we plan to relocate from Mississippi to Maine at the end of May 2012. (I know...that's months away...but its a huge step for us so we are already planning). In January, I will begin the process to receive my Maine Teacher's License in Special Education. I have 22 years experience as a Special Education teacher and MS and Maine have reciprocity so the license is not an issue of concern at this point. I've already checked out the job market and see that there are many openings for special education teachers, therefore, the opportunity for employment is not a concern. CONCERNS: 1. We hope/long/plan to begin with a rental before buying in order to ensure that we can withstand the harsh winters and we prefer the coastal area. I've noticed from researching the market that most people only rent their homes September through June. Any tips on finding affordable, rental homes in the coastal area for rent in June, July and August as well? 2. I don't currently own a 4WD vehicle. Tips for preparing for snow driving? 3. Can someone explain the difference in types of heating based on cost and ease of use? 4. I noticed that the teacher payscale in Maine has an enormous range depending on the school district. Does anyone know what the pay range is based on? For example, in one school district, the pay for a teacher with 20 years experience might be $44,000.00 while in another district, that same teacher would make $70,000.00.

I know my post was lengthy but thanks for taking the time to read...and to respond (smile).

Last edited by journey1967; 08-19-2011 at 10:01 AM..
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Old 08-19-2011, 10:04 AM
 
Location: Maine's garden spot
3,107 posts, read 5,447,587 times
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1) You don't need a four wheel drive vehicle. Use common sense and have good tires.

2) Don't rent a house that only has electric heat. Very expensive.

3) Teachers pay depends on the district or town. No universal set of criteria.
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Old 08-19-2011, 10:26 AM
 
Location: Bar Harbor, ME
1,922 posts, read 3,674,429 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by journey1967 View Post
e process to receive my Maine Teacher's License in Special Education. I have 22 years experience as a Special Education teacher and MS and Maine have reciprocity so the license is not an issue of concern at this point. I've already checked out the job market and see that there are many openings for special education teachers, therefore, the opportunity for employment is not a concern.
Maine teachers do not get social security income in retirement. Additionally due to a way the law is written at the Federal level, unless you have more than 30 years into the social security system, the moment that you take a paycheck from a Maine public school, you will lose ALL your social security benefits that you accrued over a life time of work, but less than what the SSA considers unrevocable permanent status.

Remember this. While there may be no social security for young people under the age of 35, anyone who is 45 or older will probably still get social security payments of some kind. Unless you are really saving money or are independently wealthy...this may be a big problem.
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Old 08-19-2011, 11:40 AM
 
Location: Forest, Mississippi
9 posts, read 18,923 times
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Zarathu,
That is pretty "scary".

Last edited by journey1967; 08-19-2011 at 11:59 AM..
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Old 08-19-2011, 11:41 AM
 
Location: Forest, Mississippi
9 posts, read 18,923 times
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Thanks AustinB! The heating advice was much needed.
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Old 08-19-2011, 11:43 AM
 
Location: Bangor Maine
3,442 posts, read 5,446,310 times
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I agree that you don't need a 4 wheel drive to live in Maine unless you are traveling many miles each day both ways to work or live way out on a dirt road somewhere. Check with real estate agents for housing rental availability. The budget of the town or city where you work determines how much teachers in that town are paid. Are you more interested in living near the coast or in a town that pays teachers top $? Cape Elizabeth is both on the coast in Southern Maine and they have a very favorable pay scale. You might also check out the Bath, Brunswick, Freeport area.
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Old 08-19-2011, 01:20 PM
 
Location: Northern Maine
9,532 posts, read 14,348,860 times
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Teacher salaries are determined by the relative wealth of a community.

Teachers who have taught in other states that use social security can draw the social security they have earned from work in those states. My wife is a good example. I was in the military and she taught in several states. Most of her teaching was in Maine and she gets a Maine pension. She also gets social security based on her work in prior years.

There are many superstitions about Maine laws. Ask those who know.

BTW: My wife retired as Special Education Director in our region.
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Old 08-19-2011, 02:33 PM
 
Location: Forest, Mississippi
9 posts, read 18,923 times
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Newdaawn, thanks for your advice. We are definately more interested in the coastal area and loved Camden, Bath, Belfast both times we visited. We didn't visit Cape Elizabeth but I have looked at housing ops there.
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Old 08-19-2011, 02:36 PM
 
Location: Forest, Mississippi
9 posts, read 18,923 times
Reputation: 10
Thanks Northern Maine Land Man! I spoke with a rep from both the retirement service and the social security division today. I was told that my social security funds would be decreased by 2/3rds upon retirement. I am so excited that someone with knowledge related to the Special Education field responded!
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Old 08-19-2011, 03:30 PM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
29,760 posts, read 47,638,140 times
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Welcome to Maine.

We have a friend who is also a teacher, who moved to Maine recently. She came from NJ, and she used to post here [though she has not visited City-Data for some time]. She did however come by my home this morning for a visit. She has been tutoring students who are being home-schooled. She seems to really enjoy this more than her previous work in school districts.

Whatever you do, I wish you luck



Social Security was meant to be a voluntary program.

Some employers are exempt, they offer their own retirement programs so they do not pay into your SS policy [like some states, municipalities and the R/R]. Other employers pay into your SS policy at increased rates so you mature your account [40-quarters] at a faster rate [those employers tend to be employers who assume that you will most likely become disabled while you are working, my employer did that. They paid 5 quarters into my SS policy every year].

It is still possible for a person to opt-out or revoke their SS policy, in which case you lose all funds that you have paid into your policy. I have assisted men in filing the paperwork and through the maze that SS requires to do this.

If you have been paying into your SS policy and you shift to an employer that is exempt from it, that does not 'revoke' your SS policy. Such would not make any sense. Your new employer will simply not be paying any further into your SS policy.

A few years ago SS used your most recent 40-quarters of earning to calculate your pension. Then they changed, to now using a sliding bandwidth looking at 35-years of your career, to find the 35-years in which you earned the most. In either case, by shifting to an exempt employer half-way through your career would likely hurt the calculation pretty badly. A 2/3 cut sounds reasonable.

If you make the shift, and then if you decided to be self-employed on the side somehow. Like tutoring in the summer, or pushing a hotdog cart, then you would have the opportunity to continue making contributions into your SS policy.

Since it is you own private pension plan and combined disability insurance policy; it may make sense for you to want to continue making contributions into it even after you have moved to Maine.

I would strongly suggest that you consider doing something so that you can continue making contributions into your SS policy all the way up to the day that you plan to retire. This is regardless of who your employ is, or whether they pay into your SS policy.

May God bless and keep you.
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