private vs public school


What Information Should I Bring to my Tax Appointment?

    • School name with phone number and complete address of private school attended
    • Tax identifying number of school (FEIN)
    • Documentation to show total tuition paid in 2021, for Grades K-8, for each dependent claimed
    • Documentation to show total tuition paid in 2021, for Grades 9-12, for each dependent claimed

Who is Eligible to Claim the Subtraction?

    • The subtraction may be claimed by a full-year resident, part- year resident, or nonresident of Wisconsin.
    • You must have paid tuition during the taxable year for your child to attend an eligible institution.
    • The child must have been claimed as a dependent on your Wisconsin income tax return, and the
      child must have been an "elementary pupil" or a "secondary pupil" during the taxable year.

gradeschool crossing sign


Elementary pupil means an individual who is enrolled in grades kindergarten to 8 at an eligible institution.

Secondary pupil means an individual who is enrolled in grades 9 to 12 at an eligible institution.

Eligible institution means a private school with an educational program that meets all of the following criteria:

  • The primary purpose of the program is to provide private or religious-based education.
  • The program is privately controlled.
  • The program provides at least 875 hours of instruction each school year.
  • The program provides a sequentially progressive curriculum of fundamental instruction in
    reading, language arts, mathematics, social studies, science, and health.
  • The program is not operated or instituted for the purpose of avoiding or circumventing the
    compulsory school attendance requirements.
  • The pupils in the institution's educational program, in the ordinary course of events, return
    annually to the homes of their parents or guardians for not less than 2 months of summer vacation,
    or the institution is licensed as a child welfare agency.

Tuition includes any amount paid by the claimant for a pupil's tuition to attend an eligible institution
and mandatory book fees paid to the institution.

Tuition does not include amounts paid with a voucher or any amounts paid as a separate charge for
other items, such as:

  • room and board
  • supplies
  • cap and gown fees
  • rentals of equipment
  • meals
  • transportation
  • registration fees
  • building fees
  • personal use items (e.g., uniforms, gym clothes, towels)
  • before school and after school child care
  • social and extracurricular activities, including musical or athletic activity fees
  • high school classes not required for graduation and for which no credits toward graduation are given



    CAUTION: The rules can be complicated!

    What Information Should I Bring to my Tax Appointment?

    • All 2021 Edvest or Tomorrow's Scholar account statements
    • Form 1099-Q: Payments From Qualified Education Programs
    • Total Expenses Paid in 2021: How much you paid for qualifying tuition, related fees, books, and room and board.

    Tuition plans

    RULES FOR 2021:

    WISCONSIN SUBTRACTION AMOUNT HAS INCREASED: For contributions to an EdVest or Tomorrow's Scholar account (including an account for the purchase of tuition units) in 2019 to the lesser of the amount contributed to the account or $3,380 ($1,690 if married filing separate or a divorced parent).

    NEW DUE DATE: The contribution must be made prior to the April 15th due date of the return.

    ANYONE CAN CONTRIBUTE TO THE ACCOUNT, if the owner of the college savings account has authorized them. In prior years, the owner could only authorize the parent, grandparent, great grandparent, aunt, or uncle of the beneficiary to contribute to the account. This change does not apply to an account for the purchase of tuition units.

    CARRYOVER AVAILABLE FOR FUTURE YEARS: The excess of the amount contributed to the college savings account over the amount allowed as a subtraction may be carried forward to future years and claimed as a subtraction subject to the yearly limitations. This applies only to amounts contributed for 2014 and thereafter. This change does not apply to an account for the purchase of tuition units.

    DISTRIBUTIONS MAY BE TAXABLE: For distributions from a college savings account received on or after June 1, 2014, the owner of the account may have to include an amount in income if the distribution was not used for qualified higher education expenses. The amount to be added to income is limited to the amount contributed to the account after May 31, 2014.

    ROLLOVERS MAY BE TAXABLE: If the distribution is rolled over to another state's qualified program, the amount of the distribution that was previously claimed as a subtraction from income by the owner or other contributors to the account, must be added to the owner's Wisconsin income.

    Schedule CS: Must be completed for 2021.

    College Savings Accounts