US Department of Education – Loan Forgiveness
You may qualify for a grant while you are in school, or you may qualify for loan forgiveness while teaching depending upon the type of student loan you have. Because each federal student loan has very specific requirements and specifications, it is helpful to know the type of loan you received before visiting websites or talking to customer service representatives. If you are unsure about the type of loan you have, contact either the financial aid office of the university/college you attended or the loan guarantor that holds your loan to assist you. The USDE offers grants to students and loan forgiveness to those who teach full-time in a low-income school or in a content shortage area.
Teacher Loan Forgiveness for Perkins Loans
If you have a loan from the Federal Perkins Loan Program, you might be eligible for loan forgiveness for full-time teaching at a low-income school or in a content shortage area, in grades Kindergarten through 12. Check with the school that made your Perkins Loan or visit the USDE Student Aid Information Center web site for more information.
Teacher Loan Forgiveness for Stafford Loans
If you received a Stafford loan on or after October 1, 1998, and did not have an existing student loan, you might be eligible to have a portion of your loan cancelled. Teacher loan forgiveness for Stafford loans is available to qualifying borrowers who teach in designated low-income schools in grades Kindergarten through 12. Teaching in a content shortage area is not considered for forgiveness of a Stafford loan. The National Student Loan Program (NSLP) and the USDE Student Aid Information Center are available to assist with questions about loan forgiveness for Stafford loans.
Search for Low-Income Schools
To be considered a “low-income school,” the school must be in a school district that qualified for federal funds in the year for which the cancellation is sought. Also, more than 30 percent of the school’s enrollment must be made up of children from low-income families.
A listing of designated low-income schools is available from the Teacher Cancellation Low Income Directory on the USDE web site. If you have questions regarding the list of schools, please contact the Title I Office of the Nebraska Department of Education at 402-471-2481.
Search for Teacher Shortage Areas
If you teach full time in science, mathematics, foreign language, or bilingual education, you qualify for loan forgiveness even if the subject area has not been designated as a shortage area. A listing of designated teacher shortage areas from 1990-2014 is available from the Teacher Shortage Areas Nationwide Listing on the USDE web site.
For qualifying students who intend to teach in a school that serves low-income families. Visit the Teach Grant Web Site.
Early Childhood Educator Loan Forgiveness
The Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) Program forgives the remaining balance on your Direct Loans after you have made 120 qualifying monthly payments under a qualifying repayment plan while working full-time for a qualifying employer.