From tomorrow, 1.3 million Australian families will receive a boost to their budgets to help with school costs.
Families receiving their Family Tax Benefit Part A fortnightly will receive $409 for each child in primary school and $818 for each child in high school from tomorrow until the end of June.
This payment will be paid straight into families' bank accounts as part of the transition from the Education Tax Refund to the new Schoolkids Bonus.
About 2.2 million kids will benefit from this new payment to help with expenses like uniforms, books, school excursions, stationery, and other costs like music lessons and sports registration fees.
The Government is automatically paying the full amount of the Education Tax Refund for 2011-12 to all eligible families. We don't want any family to miss out on their full entitlements.
We understand that families with kids in school are busy. With the Schoolkids Bonus, parents don't have to keep receipts to claim back expenses at tax time any more. And there's no extra paperwork.
From January next year, families will receive the new Schoolkids Bonus, paid twice a year before school goes back for Term 1 and Term 3.
Eligible families will receive $410 for children in primary school (two instalments of $205), and $820 for children in full-time secondary study (two instalments of $410).
The Schoolkids Bonus will give families more support to help cover school costs than ever before.
Under the Education Tax Refund, 80 per cent of families weren't claiming what they're entitled to – they either claimed less than the full amount, or claimed nothing at all.
Replacing the old system with the Schoolkids Bonus means one million families will receive more cash – a typical family will get more than $720 extra each year.[i]
We understand that many families are find it difficult to meet the costs things like uniforms, school books and other education expenses. The new Schoolkids Bonus will give parents extra help to balance the family budget.
This is important cost of living relief that will be delivered by the Gillard Government was voted against in the Parliament by the Liberals.
Families receiving Family Tax Benefit Part A are eligible for the new Schoolkids Bonus. Young people in school receiving Youth Allowance and some other income support and veterans' payments may also receive the payment.
Families who claim their Family Tax Benefit as a lump sum payment at the end of the financial year will automatically get this extra assistance then.
For more information visit the Department of Human Services website or call 132 468.
[i] This is based on a family with one child in primary school child and one in high school.