Important update about the Schoolkids Bonus
The Australian Government has committed to abolishing the Schoolkids Bonus. Legislation was introduced into Parliament on 13 November 2013. If the legislation is passed by both the House of Representatives and the Senate on or before 12 December 2013, the last sitting day of Parliament for this year, the Schoolkids Bonus will not be paid from January 2014.
- a parent or carer receiving Family Tax Benefit Part A for a dependent child in primary or secondary education
- a primary or secondary student turning 19 years or younger in the calendar year, who receives certain government payments
Eligibility and payment rates
Eligibility for the Schoolkids Bonus
To be eligible for the Schoolkids Bonus, you must either be a parent or carer who gets Family Tax Benefit Part A for a dependent child.
Definitions of preschool, primary and secondary school for the Schoolkids Bonus
The names of primary and secondary school years are different depending on what state you live in. Check your child's eligibility based on your location.
|State/Territory||Preschool (not eligible)||Primary school (eligible)||Secondary school (eligible)|
|NSW||Preschool||Kindergarten (Years 1-6)||Years 7-12|
|VIC||Kindergarten||Preparatory (Years 1-6)||Years 7-12|
|QLD||Kindergarten||Preparatory (Years 1-7)||Years 8-12|
|SA||Kindergarten||Reception (Years 1-7)||Years 8-12|
|WA||Kindergarten||Pre-primary (Years 1-7)||Years 8-12|
|TAS||Kindergarten||Preparatory (Years 1-6)||Years 7-12|
|NT||Preschool||Transition (Years 1-6)||Years 7-12|
|ACT||Preschool||Kindergarten (Years 1-6)||Years 7-12|
Payment rates for the Schoolkids Bonus
Unlike the previous Education Tax Refund, you do not need to claim the Schoolkids Bonus or keep receipts for education expenses.
Eligible families will receive Schoolkids Bonus in:
- two instalments of $205 for each child in primary school - a total of $410 each year
- two instalments of $410 for each child in secondary school - a total of $820 each year
If you share the care of your child with another person, you will receive a percentage of this payment. This will be based on the percentage of Family Tax Benefit you receive for the child.
How you will be paid the Schoolkids Bonus
Schoolkids bonus can be paid in different ways. If:
- you receive fortnightly payments, your Schoolkids Bonus payments will be paid in January and July
- you claim Family Tax Benefit as a lump sum, you will get your Schoolkids Bonus payment (if eligible) when your lump sum claim is assessed, and after you and your partner (if you have one) have lodged your tax returns
- you are a student and your Centrelink payment normally goes into your bank account, you will get the Schoolkids Bonus the same way
- your payments are income managed, your Schoolkids Bonus will be paid directly to your Income Management account
- you receive an education allowance for a child from the Department of Veterans' Affairs, they will pay your Schoolkids Bonus for that child.
If you prefer, you can change from receiving a lump sum to a fortnightly payment and receive the Schoolkids Bonus when the next payment is due (January or July). This can be done through Centrelink Online Services.
Transition from the Education Tax Refund to the Schoolkids Bonus
As part of the transition to the new Schoolkids Bonus, a one-off lump-sum payment was made from June 2012 to eligible families in place of the Education Tax Refund for the 2011-12 financial year.
Other benefits while receiving Schoolkids Bonus
If you are eligible for Schoolkids Bonus, you may be receiving other payments and services, such as:
Managing your payment
Check or update your child's education details for the Schoolkids Bonus
Some families may need to check or update their child's education details with us so we can pay them the right amount of Schoolkids Bonus.
You need to tell us if your child is starting primary school or secondary study, or finishing secondary study.
If you need to update your child's details you can do this by using your One Time Access Code we sent to you in November or using Centrelink Online Services. You will need your Customer Reference Number to do this.
Provide your study details for the Schoolkids Bonus
If you are an eligible student, you may need to give us your study details so we can pay you the Schoolkids Bonus. You also need to let us know if you finished secondary study after June 2012, as you may be eligible for a School Leaver payment.
If you are a student receiving Youth Allowance, ABSTUDY (Living Allowance) or Pensioner Education Supplement, you do not need to do anything. We will pay you automatically.
Give your study details
If you do not receive Pensioner Education Supplement and you are a student receiving Disability Support Pension, Carer Payment, Parenting Payment or Special Benefit, you need to give us your study details so we can pay you the Schoolkids Bonus. You can do this by visiting your nearest Service Centre or calling us.
Receiving an education allowance from the Department of Veterans' Affairs
Eligible students receiving an education allowance from the Department of Veterans' Affairs will be paid automatically and do not need to provide any extra information. To find out more visit the Department of Veterans' Affairs website, call 133 254 or, for non‑metropolitan callers, call 1800 555 254.
School Leaver payment
Families with children who completed Year 12 in 2012 may be entitled to a School Leaver instalment of Schoolkids Bonus. To receive this payment, families or individual students need to confirm with Centrelink that they have finished secondary studies (Year 12 or an equivalent qualification).
Payments paid while outside Australia
There are rules about getting your payment when you leave Australia.