Determine Eligibility

Membership and salary

TRA pension coverage is provided to certain school employees as a condition of employment, whether the employee is full-time, part-time or a substitute.


The definition of “teacher” is fairly broad and includes the following: administrator, community education director, counselor, curriculum writer, dean of students, librarian, principal, psychologist, social worker, substitute teacher, superintendent, teacher and tutor. Positions such as a business manager, student teacher, and teacher’s aide are not considered eligible for TRA membership. TRA membership is governed by Minnesota Statute Sections 354.05 subd. 2 and 354.41.

For individuals performing teaching services, report earnings for all concurrent TRA and non-TRA covered services to TRA.

Certain positions are not covered by TRA and may be covered by the Public Employees Retirement Association (PERA) or by the Minnesota State Retirement System (MSRS). Individuals with no direct employment relationship are not TRA eligible; for example, substitutes employed by Teachers on Call.

If you are unsure whether a position qualifies as TRA eligible, request a determination by emailing a copy of the position description, including percentage of time for each job task, to


“Salary” means the periodic compensation upon which member contributions are required before deductions for deferred compensation, supplemental retirement plans, or other voluntary salary reduction programs.

In general, employer-paid benefits, lump sum payments of unused sick or vacation and severance pay in any form are not considered TRA-eligible salary. If you have an administrator who receives pay for additional services, please contact your TRA Auditor for help in determining if the additional pay is eligible for the pension.