The Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice

Advancing Milton and Rose D. Friedman's Vision of School Choice for All Children

Iowa - Tuition and Textbook Tax Credit

Enacted 1987 • Launched 1987 • Individual Tax Credit

Iowa provides parents of students in any private or public school a tax credit covering educational expenses, including tuition, books, and lab or activity fees. The credit is worth a maximum of $250.

Latest Stats (2012)

  • Taxpayers participating: 145,792
  • Average tax credit value: $103

Program Details

Tax Credit Value
Parents receive a tax credit worth 25 percent of their expenditures up to a maximum credit of $250 per dependent in school. To get the maximum $250 per-dependent credit, parents must spend $1,000 in educational expenses; they also must have a state tax liability of at least $250 because the credit is nonrefundable and thus cannot reduce an individual’s tax burden to less than zero.

Student Eligibility
All students enrolled in accredited nonprofit, public, or private elementary or secondary schools in Iowa are eligible.

Legal Developments
No legal challenges have been filed against the program.

Rules & Regulations
• Income Limit: None
• Prior Year Public School Requirement: None
• Geographic Limit: Statewide
• Enrollment Cap: None
• Individual Credit Cap: $250
• Testing Mandates: None

Governing Statutes
Iowa Code § 422.12

Friedman Contact
Michael Chartier |

Related Research

10/30/2014 The School Starter Checklist: Meeting the Private Education Regulations in States with School Choice
10/8/2013 Iowa K-12 and School Choice Survey
2/5/2008 Grading School Choice: Evaluating School Choice Programs by the Friedman Gold Standard
10/1/2005 Using School Choice: Analyzing How Parents Access Educational Freedom
1/1/2003 Grading Vouchers: Ranking America’s School Choice Programs

Related News

3/12/2014 National Review Online | Choosing to Learn
1/23/2014 U.S. voucher, school choice enrollment reaches record high
10/26/2013 Des Moines Register | Another View: School choice is education reform that will help kids
10/9/2013 Radio Iowa | Iowa’s private, parochial schools push for “educational savings accounts”
10/8/2013 Iowa voters support public schools, favor expanding school choice
10/8/2013 Sioux City Journal | Poll: Iowans support school vouchers
8/15/2013 Sharing your story in “The ABCs” can be as easy as one, two, three
1/23/2013 “The ABCs of School Choice,” 2013 Edition, Now Available

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