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Aboriginal Australians -- Education (Higher) -- Northern Territory -- Periodicals; Aboriginal Australians -- Education -- Research -- Periodicals
Charles Darwin University
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11 ISSUE 24 | March 2010 GOVERNMENT DELIVERS ON YOUTH ALLOWANCE The Minister for Education, Julia Gillard, today welcomed the agreement of the Opposition to secure the passage of the Youth Allowance bill in the Senate which will see more than 150 000 students across Australia start to receive new scholarships from April 1. More than 100 000 students will be better off under the changes by receiving more Youth Allowance or Youth Allowance for the fi rst time. New parental income test arrangements will come into force from July 1. The changes will make a real difference for families trying to send their kids to university and will help ease the cost of living pressures that university can place on students and their families. Ms Gillard said Senator Xenophon and the Australian Greens had worked hard with the Government to make changes to the bill to make it fairer for students who took a gap year in 2009. She thanked them for their professionalism in dealing with these changes which will also include a $20 million fund for regional students and a review of the changes to be held in 2012. The Liberal and National Parties agreed to the bill after the Government made changes that will mean students who live away from our major cities and regional centres who have to move will be eligible under the existing independence test. The existing test will be restricted to those who leave home to study, whose parents earn less than $150 000 a year and who live in Very Remote, Remote or Outer Regional areas as defi ned by the Australian Bureau of Statistics. In keeping with the Governments commitment to responsible economic management, the amendments will be paid for by a reduction in annual start-up scholarships to $2 128 once the scheme is fully up and running. This will keep the changes cost neutral. Key elements of the changes include: All students who receive Youth Allowance will receive a $2 128 start up scholarship every year, indexed for infl ation. ($1 300 in 2010) Students who live in very remote, remote and outer regional areas, who have to move away from home to study and whose parents earn less than $150 000 a year will be eligible for the existing independence test criteria. The parental income test will be raised so that families with two children studying away from home can earn more than $140 000 before their allowance is cut completely. Students who choose to move to study may be eligible for an additional relocation scholarship, worth $4 000, in the fi rst year of study and $1 000 each subsequent year. From 1 July 2012, students will be able to earn $400 a fortnight (up from $236) without having their payments reduced. The age of independence will reduce progressively from 25 years to 22 years by 2012, which will see an estimated 7 600 new recipients of the independent rate of allowance. SCHOLARSHIP OPPORTUNITIES CONTINUED....
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