Early-career teachers who work in lower-income school districts would be eligible to receive up to $20,000 in total student loan debt relief over 10 consecutive years, under a state Senate bill introduced by several Democratic lawmakers.
Senate Bill 673 would apply fully for newer teachers in districts where at least 45% of students qualify for free and reduced lunch. Those who work in a school that is not so designated “at-risk” could apply to receive up to $10,000 in student loan debt relief over 10 years.
Under the measure, teachers could first apply for the program within three years of receiving initial certification and continue receiving a grant each year for up to 10 years. The annual grant payments would cover 10% of remaining student debt up to $20,000 for teachers in at-risk schools and 5% for those not teaching in at-risk schools.
The bill would create a teachers loan forgiveness fund to pay for the program. House Democrats proposed another student debt relief plan earlier this year as part of their “Respecting Educators” proposal.