TOUGHER TIMES: The McFarlane Family will be missing out when the SchoolKids Bonus is scrapped in 2016. The McFarlane children are (from left) Levi, Mackenzie, Jordan and Jackson.
TOUGHER TIMES: The McFarlane Family will be missing out when the SchoolKids Bonus is scrapped in 2016. The McFarlane children are (from left) Levi, Mackenzie, Jordan and Jackson. Ebony Battersby

Family will lose $1200 when Schoolkids Bonus goes

THE McFarlane family, with four children under the age of 10, will be left out of pocket almost $1200 once the SchoolKids Bonus is scrapped next year.

It will be a blow to the family budget, which father Troy admits isn't as high as many other Gladstone households.

"We're not on great money and have a larger family," he said.

"When we found out it was going to be scrapped, it was disappointing. Every little bit helps in our household."

Mr McFarlane is still holding onto hope the Federal Government will announce a replacement benefit to assist Australian families with educational expenses.

The cuts in 2016 will follow two years of trialling a means-tested SchoolKids bonus, whereby families will only get the bonus if they have an adjusted taxable income of $100,000 or less.

John Desmond believes means-testing a child's right to educational benefits is inherently wrong.

"The government needs to educate the families in need, not keep throwing low-income families more money plus all the other benefits," he said.

"Every family deserves the money to send their children to school, not just lower income households."

The Schoolkids Bonus will be paid automatically from January 5 to 19 to eligible families and students.

Those eligible will receive an instalment of up to $211 for each primary student and $421 for each child secondary student.

Payments of the same amounts will occur again in July.

Chantel Rasmussen says her household income means she will continue to qualify for the bonus.

However, she knows the back-to-school period in 2017 will hit her wallet a little harder.

"At the end of the day education is the most important thing, at least that's what the politicians keep saying," she said.

"I don't understand why they are slashing funding. Families need all the money we can get at the moment."

The last instalment of the SchoolKids bonus will be paid in July 2016.



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