An eligible educator can deduct qualified expenses as an adjustment to income on their tax return. The maximum amount they can deduct is as follows:
- 2021 and prior: $250
- 2022 and forward: $300
If spouses filing jointly are both eligible educators, their maximum is twice the individual maximum but neither can include more than the individual maximum.
A taxpayer is considered an eligible educator if the school is kindergarten through grade 12 and:
- They are a teacher, instructor, counselor, principal, or aide, and
- They worked at least 900 hours in a public or private school that provides elementary or secondary education, as determined under state law.
Qualified expenses include expenses paid for:
- Professional courses taken related to the curriculum the taxpayer teaches. (These courses may qualify for utilizing the lifetime learning credit. See Publication 970, Tax Benefits for Education.)
- Books, supplies, equipment (including computer equipment, software, and services) and other materials used in the classroom.
- COVID-19 protective items to stop the spread of the disease in the classroom, such as hand soap or sanitizer, disposable gloves, tape, air purifiers and other items recommended by the CDC.
Qualified expenses don't include:
- Expenses for home schooling
- Non-athletic supplies for courses in health or physical education
To enter educator expenses in TaxSlayer Pro, from the Main Menu of the tax return (Form 1040) select:
- Educator Expenses
Note: This is a guide on entering Educator Expenses into the TaxSlayer Pro program. This is not intended as tax advice.
IRS: Publication 529, Miscellaneous Deductions
IRS Tax Topic 458 - Educator Expense Deduction