Can a Pre-K Teacher Take the Teachers' Deduction on the 1040?
Preschool teachers aren't qualifying educators under the Internal Revenue Service code.
Pre-kindergarten, or pre-K, teachers often work long hours preparing preschool students for regular school and may incur expenses such as books, educational materials and classroom decorations. The Educator Expense Deduction allows teachers to deduct up to $250 of expenses that they do not have to itemize, but preschool teachers are not eligible for this deduction as of 2013. Some states, however, offer state income tax deductions for preschool teachers, and preschool teachers are still eligible for other employee business expense deductions.
As of 2013, to qualify for the teachers' tax deduction, you
must must work at least 900 hours per year in a primary or secondary school. You must also be a teacher, counselor, principal or aide teaching or serving in administration for kindergarten through 12th grade. Preschool teachers don't meet these requirements, even if you exceed the 900-hour-per-year threshold or are licensed to teach primary or secondary school.
State income tax laws sometimes offer additional deductions to teachers, but most preschool teachers have been left out of these laws as well. Texas, for example, attempted to expand the teacher deduction on state income taxes to include preschool teachers in 2011. This bill, however, died in committee.
Preschool Teacher DeductionsSource: finance.zacks.com