School Enrolment and Attendance Measure - Northern Territory

You must enrol any school aged child in your care in school and they must attend regularly, or your payments may stop.

What it is

Under the School Enrolment and Attendance Measure (SEAM):

  • you need to enrol your school aged child in school, and
  • make sure they attend school regularly

If you don’t, we may stop your payment.

School teaches your children how to read, write and count. Going to school every day helps your children make good decisions and gives them more opportunities as they grow up.

Who it applies to

SEAM applies to you if you:

  • live in a SEAM location
  • care for a school aged child, and
  • get a payment from us or the Department of Veterans’ Affairs

Where it applies

SEAM locations are:

  • Alice Springs
  • Alyangula
  • Angurugu
  • Galiwin’ku
  • Gapuwiyak
  • Gunbalanya
  • Katherine
  • Katherine Town Camps
  • Lajamanu
  • Maningrida
  • Milingimbi
  • Milyakburra
  • Ngukurr
  • Nhulunbuy
  • Ntaria (Hermannsburg)
  • Numbulwar
  • Tennant Creek
  • Tiwi Islands
  • Umbakumba
  • Wadeye
  • Wallace Rockhole
  • Yirrkala, and
  • Yuendemu

How it applies

There are 2 parts to SEAM – enrolment and attendance.

This won’t affect you if your child’s enrolled in school and they attend regularly.


You need to enrol any school aged child in your care in:

  • school
  • distance education, or
  • approved home education

We might ask about your child’s enrolment details.

If you don’t enrol your child in school and you don’t have a good reason or special circumstances, we may stop your payments until you enrol them.


Your child also needs to go to school during school hours each week during the school term.

If your child can’t go to school, you need to tell the school why.

What happens if your child doesn’t go to school

The Northern Territory Department of Education (NT DoE) might ask to meet with you if your child isn’t going to school.

If you’re asked to meet with NT DoE, you must attend.

At the meeting, you’ll:

  • talk about why your child isn’t at school, and
  • make an attendance plan

Your attendance plan will include what you and your child’s school will do to help make sure your child goes to school every day.

You need to tell NT DoE straight away if you can’t go to your meeting.

We may suspend your payment if:

  • you don’t meet with NT DoE, or
  • you meet with NT DoE but you don’t agree to or follow your attendance plan

If you don’t meet your requirements for a total of 13 weeks we may cancel your payment.

How SEAM works

Support available

Our social workers can support you to get your child to school. They can also come to your meeting with NT DoE to help you.

You can talk to an Education Liaison Officer if you have questions about SEAM.

You can talk to an Agent if you live in a rural or remote area.

Your right to privacy

We may collect and disclose information about school enrolment and attendance as part of the measure. We do this in accordance with the Privacy Act 1988 and the Social Security (Administration) Act 1999.

Read more about your right to privacy.

How to find out more

To find out more about SEAM:

Page last updated: 27 August 2017