Deducting Expenses for Educating Others

Eligible educators can deduct up to $250 ($500 if married, joint filers are both educators) for any related expenses they incur which are not reimbursed by any party. Similar to trade or , qualifying educator expenses may include things like books, supplies, technology, equipment and supplemental material you may need within the class. If you teach health or physical education, your qualified expenses are limited to those related to athletics.

Qualifications for Eligible Educator

You are considered an eligible educator if the following two conditions apply during the tax year:

  1. You either a teacher, instructor, principal, aide, or counselor for kindergarten through 12th
  2. You work a minimum of 900 hours a school year in an elementary or secondary school as deemed by law.

Your expenses must exceed the following limits in order to be deductible for the tax year:

  • Interest on qualified U.S. Savings bonds you excluded from your income because you paid higher education expenses.
  • Qualified tuition program distributions excluded from your income
  • Tax-free withdrawals from your Coverdell Education Savings Account
  • Reimbursed expenses not reported on a Form W-2

Contact your tax preparer with any questions about eligible educator deductions.