The ‘Isolated Children’s Allowance’ is available to some parents for children educated outside of the school or at home. The old eligibility criteria for this allowance was very strict – basically your child had to be ‘incapable of attending school’ and they defined capable of attending school as it being possible for a child to be left at school – regardless of safety of educational outcomes, if they could be physically dropped off, they were ‘capable’ of attending.
Since 2011 the administration of this allowance is now under Centrelink’s jurisdication, the eligibility criteria has been loosened up.
If you are home educating, regardless of where you are, you may be entitled to this assistance with support from a GP or specialist. Medical reasons may include mental health issues such as anxiety and depression from bullying or family trauma such as a severely ill parent.
This is a large entitlement and can greatly assist with the costs of educating your child, particularly if medical costs are also an issue to family budgeting. Remember, you do not need to be geographically isolated to be eligible for this allowance.
The allowance can be applied for through Centrelink, is not income or assets tested and does not affect your Family Tax Benefit. For more details see the Centrelink website or ask Centrelink for the information booklet on Assistance for Isolated Children Allowance.