Loan forgiveness is a trade-off. It’s about incentivizing graduates to work in low paying or otherwise undesirable positions in exchange for erasing or significantly reducing their student loan balance. Without these programs, important community institutions would be severely understaffed.
If you’re a teacher or education student reading this, those criteria probably sound familiar.
Many school districts struggle to fully staff their schools, especially when it comes to certain positions. Loan forgiveness programs are one of the best ways for them to attract job candidates and retain them for long enough to make an impact.
Teachers have several options when it comes to loan forgiveness. Here’s what you should know about each one.
Teacher Loan Forgiveness
The Teacher Loan Forgiveness Program is the only federal loan forgiveness program specifically designed for teachers. Math or science teachers who teach in secondary schools or special education teachers can have up to $17,500 worth of loans forgiven. Any other kind of teacher can only receive up to $5,000 worth of loan forgiveness.
The program has strict requirements. Teachers must hold a license or certification in their state and teach for five consecutive years in a school that primarily serves low-income students. A list of eligible schools is available here.
Teachers qualify even if they work at different schools for each of the five