Teacher Loan Forgiveness Eligibility Requirements, When & How To Apply, etc.

Are you a teacher in the United States of America wanting to apply for the Teacher Loan forgiveness but doesn’t know how? How about qualification? Do you think you qualify for your loan to be forgiven at all? Well worry no more as I try to make it easier for you in this article.

About Teacher Loan Forgiveness Program

The Teacher Loan Forgiveness program makes it possible for teachers who have taught for five straight academic years in a low-income school to have their direct subsidized, unsubsidized and federal loans forgiven.

The total amount of loan forgiveness a teacher qualifies for is up to $17,500. Applicants must note that they cannot be given credit for Teacher Loan Forgiveness and Public Service Loan Forgiveness at the same time.

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Eligibility Criteria

  • Applicant must be a full time teacher who has taught for at least five uninterrupted academic years. NB: at least one of the five years must be after the 1997/98 academic year.
  • Shouldn’t be owing a Direct Loan or a Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) Program loans as at 1st October 1998
  • You can only qualify for forgiveness if the loan in question was taken during the five complete and consecutive academic years.
  • Lastly, a teacher seeking loan forgiveness must be teaching in a low income elementary school, secondary school or an educational service agency.

How To Apply For Teacher Loan Forgiveness

  • Fill and complete a Teacher Loan Forgiveness Application- information needed when filling the form include; Social Security Number, Full name, address, city, telephone number, etc.
  • Chief administrative officer of the school you completed the qualifying teaching service must certify your application.
  • Submit the completed form to your loan servicer/s

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When To Apply

The only time you can apply for your loan to be forgiven is after you are done with the mandatory five consecutive academic years teaching in a low-income school.


Q1. How much can I receive as loan forgiveness?

Teachers who qualify for loan forgiveness can receive up to $17,000 or $5,000 depending on your qualification. For example highly qualified teachers who taught or are teaching mathematics or science in a secondary school can get a loan forgiveness of up to $17,500.

Q2. Which schools are classified as low-income school or educational service agency?

Schools classified as low-income schools or educational service agency must be listed in the Teacher Cancellation Low Income (TCLI) Directory. Hence borrowers who wishes to apply for forgiveness of loan must search the TCLI directory database.

Q3. Which teachers are classified as Highly Qualified Teachers?

To be classified as a highly qualified teacher, you must be at a bachelor’s degree holder, fully certified by the state as a teacher. Additionally, to be classified as a highly qualified teacher, then it means your certificate or license was never renounced on emergency or temporary basis.

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