Are you getting all the back-to-school subsidies you can?

Some subsidies may help with children in public or private school. 

Most parents would agree that sending children to school can be costly. Whether your children attend a public or private school, costs for uniforms, stationery and transport add up throughout the year.

Thankfully, the federal and state governments provide refunds and payments to help ease the financial burden of putting children through school.

We’ve put together a list of some of the subsidies available that you may be eligible for.

Schoolkids Bonus

The Schoolkids Bonus is a payment from the Federal Government to a parent or carer receiving Family Tax Benefit Part A for a dependent child in primary or secondary education. It provides $422 a year for each child in primary school and $842 for each child in secondary school. This year, from 1 January 2015, payments will be subject to an income test and will only be payable to families with an adjusted taxable income of up to $100,000. You can find out more about eligibility at the Department of Human Services website.

Assistance for isolated children

If you have a child at primary or secondary school-age who can’t go to a state school because of geographical isolation, disability or health reasons, the Assistance for Isolated Children scheme may provide tax-free payments exempt from income and assets tests. Find out more at the Department of Human Services website.

Other allowances

In addition to federal funding, some states may provide additional payments for eligible families:

  • Queensland families may receive payments to help buy textbooks and resources. Find out more at the Queensland government's
  • Lower-income families in South Australia may receive payments for education expenses. Find out whether your family is eligible at
  • Parents and grandparents in Tasmania may receive payments for children enrolled in kindergarten, and primary and secondary school. You’ll find more information at
  • In Western Australia, families may be eligible for payments to help with older children in high school. Visit to find out more.

Getting to and from school

Daily school-travel costs can add up year upon year. Make sure you know about the public transport concessions available in your state. Some states allow children to travel free while others offer discounted fares and rules, and conditions can change from year to year.

Australian State Public transport website
New South Wales School Student Transport Scheme
Victoria Public Transport Victoria
Queensland School Transport Assistance Scheme
South Australia  Adelaide Metro
Tasmania  Transport Access Scheme
Western Australia  Student SmartRider
Northern Territory Northern Territory Government Department of Transport

Find out more

Make sure you’re making the most of the payments and subsidies you may be entitled to. Every little bit helps when the cost of raising kids is ever-increasing. You can find out why the cost of raising kids has doubled in the last ten years in the AMP.NATSEMi report: Cost of kids.

Since 2002, AMP and the National Centre for Social and Economic Modelling (NATSEM) have produced a series of reports to help the community make informed financial and lifestyle decisions and to contribute to important social and economic policy debate. Find out more about AMP.NATSEM.

Want to keep up to date with the latest news?

Sign up now

Recommended articles

Important information

Show more

© AMP Life Limited. This provides general information and hasn’t taken your circumstances into account. It’s important to consider your particular circumstances before deciding what’s right for you. Although the information is from sources considered reliable, AMP does not guarantee that it is accurate or complete. You should not rely upon it and should seek qualified advice before making any investment decision. Except where liability under any statute cannot be excluded, AMP does not accept any liability (whether under contract, tort or otherwise) for any resulting loss or damage of the reader or any other person.