Sara Routhier, Managing Editor of Features and Outreach, has professional experience as an educator, SEO specialist, and content marketer. She has over five years of experience in the insurance industry. As a researcher, data nerd, writer, and editor she strives to curate educational, enlightening articles that provide you with the must-know facts and best-kept secrets within the overwhelming worl...

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Joel Ohman is the CEO of a private equity-backed digital media company. He is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, author, angel investor, and serial entrepreneur who loves creating new things, whether books or businesses. He has also previously served as the founder and resident CFP® of a national insurance agency, Real Time Health Quotes. He also has an MBA from the University of South Florida. ...

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Reviewed by Joel Ohman
Founder, CFP®

UPDATED: Sep 14, 2011

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Teaching can be a rewarding profession, and the federal government has added another benefit with its Stafford Loan Forgiveness Program for Teachers. Through this program, teachers can receive up to $17,500 toward paying off their student loans.

Individuals are eligible for this funding if they teach for five consecutive years in one or more schools or educational service agencies schools that serve low-income families. Borrowers also must have taken out a first time Direct of FFEL federal student loan on or after Oct. 1, 1998 and cannot be in default on their current loans.

The amount of money a borrower can receive depends on what kind of school her or she taught in, what subject or specialty he or she taught and the date he or she started the five years of teaching.

To apply for loan forgiveness, a borrower must complete the Teacher Loan Forgiveness Application, which can be accessed through his or her loan servicer for each separate loan for which he or she seeks forgiveness. Information on how to contact a loan servicer can be found on the National Student Loan Data System’s website. The chief administrative officer at the educational institution at which the borrower taught must certify your participation in their teaching program for at least five years.

This can be a great resource for students struggling with student loans who have chosen to become teachers, and also benefits schools that might also need some extra help. According to the Federal Student Aid website, “The Teacher Loan Forgiveness Program is intended to encourage individuals to enter and continue in the teaching profession.”