Media Release by The Hon Jenny Macklin MP

Helping Newcastle families get back to school with the Schoolkids Bonus

Families and stores in Newcastle are feeling the benefits of the Gillard Government’s first Schoolkids Bonus cash payment which has been rolling out this month.

The Minister for Families, Jenny Macklin, today met with local parents at Officeworks in Newcastle who have now received the Schoolkids Bonus.

Ms Macklin said that with school starting this week the Schoolkids Bonus is helping parents to get those last minute school supplies.

“Nationally, about $588 million has hit the bank accounts of 1.2 million families across Australia since payments began over a fortnight ago,” Ms Macklin said.

“In Newcastle more than 7,000 local families have received the Schoolkids Bonus January payment, worth a total of about $3.3 million.

“That’s $3.3 million available for families to spend at local businesses like book shops, shoe shops, sports shops, department stores and stationery outlets on back-to-school items like school uniforms, shoes, school books and stationery,” Ms Macklin said.

The January instalment of the Schoolkids Bonus is worth $205 for each child in primary school and $410 for each high school student. Families will receive another payment in July – bringing the total Schoolkids Bonus to $410 and $820 a year.

Families receiving Family Tax Benefit Part A, as well as young people in school receiving Youth Allowance, and others receiving certain income support or veterans’ payments are eligible for the Schoolkids Bonus.

Ms Macklin said the Gillard Government’s Schoolkids Bonus is a big help for local families.

“A family with two children will receive $15,000 in Schoolkids Bonus payments over the course of their kids’ schooling.

“However, Tony Abbott and the Liberals have confirmed they would scrap the Schoolkids Bonus – leaving a family with two kids $15,000 worse off” Ms Macklin said.

For the latest information about the Schoolkids Bonus and other family assistance measures, visit or like the Australian Families Facebook page at