Maximum 2023 Educator Expenditure Deduction is $300

Educator DeductionIt’s a new school year, and the IRS is reminding teachers and other educators that they can deduct up to $300 in out-of-pocket classroom expenses for the fiscal year when they file their 2023 federal income tax return. (This is the same limit that was in effect for 2022.) The limit increases to $600 if two eligible educators are married and file a joint return – but each individual spouse is still capped at $300.


Educators who work in a school setting for at least 900 hours during the school year and who support kindergarten through twelfth grade as a teacher, instructor, principal, aide, or counselor qualify for the deduction. Both public and private school teachers are eligible. Even when taking the standard deduction, educators can claim this benefit. Take care to keep diligent records, including receipts, cancelled checks, and other evidence.

Deductible Expenses

Per the IRS, educators may deduct the unreimbursed cost of the following items:

  • Books, supplies, and other classroom materials
  • Equipment – including computer equipment – software, and services
  • Professional development courses related to their curriculum or students
    • Please Note: for some expenses, it may be more advantageous to claim another educational tax benefit, such as the lifetime learning credit. For more information, contact your HW&Co. advisor or review Publication 970, Tax Benefits for Education, paying special attention to Chapter 3.
  • COVID-19 protective items used to prevent the spread of illness in the classroom, including face masks, disinfectant, hand soap, hand sanitizer, disposable gloves, physical barriers (such as clear plexiglass), air purifiers, tape, paint, or chalk to guide social distancing, and other items recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Ineligible expenses include nonathletic items used in health or physical education courses, as well as the cost of home schooling.

Include Educator Expenses on 2022 Tax Returns

If you received an extension for 2022 and have yet to file, don’t forget that the requirements for educators claiming the deduction are the same as they are for 2023. The filing date for taxpayers who received an extension is Oct. 16, 2023.

Read the full IRS news release (IR-2023-150) for more information. Contact your HW&Co. advisor with any questions.