Please find below tools you can use to advocate for better 403(b) choices. The first resource is an editable Google Slides presentation that is a comprehensive look at the retirement plans available to teachers. It can be used to help educate colleagues about investing. It can also be used to educate your employer about the need to offer quality 403(b) and 457(b) investment choices. Next is a section of key 403(b) issues explained in 3 slides. Below that are short videos, must-read articles, a 403(b) savings calculator, a teacher-created education and advocacy presentation, and a story about how one New York teacher helps educate colleagues. We will continue to build out this toolbox.
Featured Slide Deck (Google Slides)
- Get Wise to the 403(b) and Saving for Retirement (Click and make a copy)
3-Slide Explainers (Google Slides)
- Why We Need a Low-Cost 403(b) Option | Talking Points to accompany presentation
- The NEA is Awful on the 403(b) | Support article: Unions' Advice is Failing Teachers
- Working with an Advisor | Support article: Working with a Financial Professional
Vendors Offering Low-Cost Investments
- Aspire Financial Services
- CalSTRS Pension2 (only in California)
- Fidelity Investments
- MissionSquare (formerly ICMA-RC)
- T. Rowe Price
Note: In certain situations Lincoln Investments, PlanMember and Security Benefit can offer decent choices. Read: When Bad Vendors Offer Good Investment Choices
403bcompare.com: Resource for finding investment costs
Created by the state of California to foster fee transparency, this database can be an excellent tool if you know where to look for all of the fees. Here's a short video and a short story on how to use 403bcompare.com
403(b) Fee Calculator
- 403(b) Savings Calculator by Bankrate
Form Letter to Use with School Officials (Google Document)
- Request to add a 403(b) vendor (Click and make a copy)
- Request to add a Roth contribution option (Click and make a copy)
- Request to add a 457(b) plan (Click and make a copy)
- What is the 403(b)? What are the 403(b) issues and challenges teachers face? How can teachers join together to fix the broken K-12 403(b)?
- Does the 457(b) Beat the 403(b)? The 457(b) has some key advantages.
- The 403(b) Fee Monster Short claymation showing the frightening impact of high fees.
- How to Find 403(b) Fees Short tutorial on how to use 403bcompare.com
- To Roth, or Not to Roth? How to determine if you should contribute on a pre-tax or after-tax Roth basis
- Finding the Right Advisor Tips for finding an advisor that will work with your interests in mind
Must-Read 403(b) Articles
- Teachers Are Getting Schooled Excellent overview of the challenges teachers face.
- Failing Teachers Why K-12 403(b) Plans Fall Outside of ERISA.
- Think Your Retirement Plan is Bad? Talk to a Teacher
- Even Math Teachers Are at a Loss to Understand Annuities
- An Annuity for the Teacher — and the Broker
- Fixed Indexed Annuities: 'Magical' or 'Unsuitable'?
Teacher Created Presentations
- Understanding Your 403(b) and Other Retirement Options by Chris Nye, New Jersey teacher.
- Your 403(b) Has a Leak: How Hidden Fees Impact Your Account by Chris Nye, New Jersey teacher.
A New York School District Does 403(b) Education Right
Learn how 40 newish teachers got wise to the 403(b).
We are looking for teachers who would like to participate as 403bwise Super Advocates. If you would like more information, let us know by sending us a message from our Contact page.
Fight for Better 403(b) Super Advocate teacher Chris Nye educates colleagues and has helped get T. Rowe Price and Vanguard on vendor list. Listen Now »
Saying No to No Undaunted by roadblocks, a 30-year-old Speech Language Pathologist adds a better 403(b) vendor to her employer's offerings. Listen Now »
Fire in the Belly New Jersey teacher says no to bad 403(b) choices and yes to educating colleagues about saving for retirement. Listen Now »