A new report from the Manhattan Institute and the Foundation for Educational Choice, “Underfunded Teacher Pension Plans: It’s Worse Than You Think,” is receiving a lot of media attention. Stories about the report have appeared in many outlets, including Education Week, USA Today, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and Business Week.
Co-authored by Josh Barro and Stuart Buck, the report claims that teacher pension plans are significantly more underfunded than most people realize. Last week, in an opinion piece on Forbes.com called “The Teacher Pension Nightmare,” Barro spelled out just what this might mean for the country: “Pension and retirement plans all over America have lost value. Plans covering public school teachers, by their own admission, are underfunded by $332 billion. However, the plans’ real funding gap is far worse than their financial statements show, at nearly a trillion dollars — and you and I will bear the burden of covering their shortfall.”