Senator Loughran Cappel

CREST HILL – As students return to the classroom, State Senator Meg Loughran Cappel is reminding families that they may be able to claim school expenses for their K-12 students on their 2023 Illinois individual income tax returns. 

“Getting kids ready for school can be a financial burden for families,” said Loughran Cappel (D-Shorewood). “There are programs available that can put money back in your pockets. I encourage families and teachers to take advantage of these resources to help cut down on back-to-school costs.”

The Illinois Education Expense Credit allows parents or legal guardians of a full-time K-12 student to take a 25% tax credit on qualified education expenses over $250 this year. The total credit may not exceed $750, regardless of the number of qualifying students.

Qualified educational expenses include tuition, book rental and lab fees in excess of $250 paid to the school where the student is enrolled on a full-time basis. For home schooled students – book rental and lab fees greater than $250 are eligible when attending a qualified home school program.

The K-12 Instructional Materials and Supplies Tax Credit allows eligible teachers of full-time K-12 students to receive a tax break for qualified expenses on classroom materials paid during the taxable year. To qualify, taxpayers must be teachers, instructors, counselors, principals, or aides for at least 900 hours during a school year. Increasing from last year, they can now claim a credit up to $500 for qualified expenses they paid in the current taxable year. If spouses are both educators and are filing jointly, the maximum credit is $1,000.

“Teachers often spend their own money to fill their classroom with essential resources for students,” said Loughran Cappel. “We want our kids to be lifelong learners – to do so we have to prioritize the educators who use their own resources to benefit the students.”

Visit the Illinois Department of Revenue’s website for more information.