Year-End Tax Planning Tip for Educators
Dolores Kong

This may be the last year of a relatively new $250
deduction for educators who pay for books and
classroom supplies out of their own pocket. So if
you were planning on buying some supplies for next
semester, you may want to do so before the end of
the year. Then you can claim up to $250 in expenses
as a deduction on your 2003 tax return. Eligible
educators include: teachers, instructors,
counselors, and principals or aides who worked at
least 900 hours in an elementary or secondary
school. Qualified expenses include books, computer
equipment, and classroom supplies. The deduction
went into effect for the first time in 2002, and
lasts only through 2003, unless tax law is changed
to extend it. But educators can still continue to
deduct some expenses under the old, more stringent
rule, requiring them to itemize deductions. For more
information on the tax break, go to,,id=107557,00.html