Supporting services employees who incurred personal student loan debt prior to their employment with MCPS may be eligible for assistance to help them pay off their student loans sooner. The Board of Education and SEIU Local 500 established the MCPS Student Debt Fund for employees in the SEIU Local 500 bargaining unit as part of the negotiated agreement.
The goal of the fund is to provide assistance for up to 5 percent of the employee's original loan per year, paying off not more that 50 percent of the balance brought into MCPS, not to exceed the existing balance in any given year. The fund is intended to pay for programs at universities, trade schools, training programs, and other institutes of learning that provided supporting services professionals the education needed to serve the MCPS community and do their jobs well.
As a result of The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act of 2020, MCPS can provide an employee with up to $5,250 of educational assistance without having to raise the employee’s gross taxable yearly income. This means that funds up to $5,250 that an employee receives through MCPS’s Student Debt Relief Fund are not considered wages and will not be taxed. If MCPS provides more than $5,250 in educational assistance benefits to an employee during the year, the employee must pay tax on the amount over $5,250. The CARES Act will allow employers to make tax-exempt loan-repayment contributions of up to $5,250 through December 31, 2025.
To be eligible for MCPS's student debt relief, you must—
have been employed for a minimum of 12 months in an SEIU bargaining unit position;
have attended a workshop* on understanding the Student Debt Relief Fund and additional student debt relief options for which you may be eligible;
have acquired student loan debt for your personal use (i.e., the loan was incurred for your education and not for a family member's education);
have incurred the student debt for studies relevant to any employment with MCPS;
have incurred the student debt—for which you are currently in loan repayment—prior to your employment with MCPS;
be in good standing with the lender to whom you are repaying the eligible student debt;
apply to the fund between February 15 and March 31 each year.
Interested? To apply—
Employee and Retiree Service Center
Attn: SEIU Student Debt Relief
45 West Gude Drive, Suite 1200
Rockville, Maryland 20850
If you are a returning applicant who was approved previously, you must—
If you applied in a previous year and were denied, you must reapply and follow the eligibility requirements for new applicants.
*See a list of SEIU's debt relief workshops
**Applications submitted prior to February 15 will not be accepted and will need to be resubmitted within the announced application period.