“What a teacher is, is more important than what he teaches”-Karl A. Menniger, renown American psychiatrist
It’s that time of year, BACK TO SCHOOL. While that term may look different this academic year, one thing remains the same: Teachers are an integral part of our children’s future and they deserve tax deductions too!
Now more than ever, our educators have a lot on their plate and the last thing on their mind is probably taxes. Here are some of the ways that tax laws benefit educators.
The Educator Deduction allows teachers to deduct up to $250 in school-related expenses from their income without having to itemize. If you and your spouse are educators and you file jointly, both of you can claim up to $250 each.
So, who qualifies for an Educator Expense Deductions? A grade K-12 teacher, counselor, principal, aide, or instructor, who has completed 900 hours of work during the school year.
So, what can you deduct?
1. Clothing or uniforms that are used specifically and only for work.
2. Professional fees and dues, related to advancing your education. This includes the following:
- Alumni Dues
- Association Dues
- Continuing Professional Education
- School and Union Dues
- Correspondence Course Fees
- Materials and Supplies
- Reference Material
- Research Expenses
- Tuition from an Accredited College or University
3. Supplies, such as books, computer equipment and software, if working from home. Physical education teachers can claim athletic equipment. Also, services that are needed to maintain the integrity of your job. For instance, if you access and download online classroom worksheets these can be claimed. Other examples are:
- Arts and Crafts Materials
- Audio Visual Supplies
- Classroom Decorations
- Film and Processing
- Newspapers and Magazines
- Party Supplies
- Student Prizes and Awards
- Visual Aids
4. Mileage can be deducted for school-related travel (Note: This does not include traveling to and from your place of work)
- Continuing Education
- School Functions
- Parking Fees and Tolls
So, thank you to all the teachers and educators for your patience, energy and flexibility during these trying times. We see you, and know that you are doing your best to keep students engaged and learning.