Government to Help Parents with Kids in School
The Gillard government has announced that it will pay parents up to $820 for every kid in school. The move is the government’s way of helping parents to address the rising cost of education in the country.
The amount will be wired directly to their bank accounts in June. This also essentially replaces the current education tax refund, which requires parents to save receipts issued for purchases on school uniforms and computers.
The current education tax refund, however, will be scrapped in the May 8 budget deliberations. Reports have also shown that more than a million families eligible under the scheme are not claiming their full benefits. Around 600,000 families do not even claim at all.
This amounts to close to $300 million in unclaimed benefits.
This will now be replaced with the new SchoolKids Bonus. Under the new scheme, families can claim up to $820 for every teen in school and about $410 for every child in primary school. The benefits will be paid from 2013 in two installments.
If a family has two teenaged kids in high school, then the family can receive as much as $1,640. The one-off lump sum will be credited to the family’s bank account in June.
Prime Minister Julia Gillard said that a million families will receive extra money to help defray school costs. She added that this year’s Budget will have a surplus and families would be able to benefit from it.
Gillard also reiterated that the payment not only help the families but also the economy in general. The retail sector, for one, would be able to benefit because families can buy more with the money.