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The Queensland Government is now in caretaker mode until after the state election. Minimal updates will be made to this site until after the election results are declared.

Living Away From Home Allowances Scheme

The Living Away From Home Allowances Scheme (LAFHAS) supports eligible Queensland families whose children need to live away from home to attend a state school or an accredited non-state school.

This may be because their:

What support is available?

The scheme provides financial support through 4 allowances:

  • Remote Area Tuition Allowance (RATuA)—helps pay tuition fees charged by non-state boarding schools
  • Remote Area Travel Allowance (RATrA)—helps pay a student's travel costs between home and boarding school during holidays
  • Remote Area Allowance (RAA)—contributes to the cost of boarding at a Queensland Australian Agricultural College campus or a state high school campus
  • Remote Area Disability Supplement (RADS)—helps with additional boarding costs for students with disability.

Use the 2017 LAFHAS rates list for information on much money you can receive.

Eligibility

To qualify for LAFHAS payments, applicants must meet general eligibility criteria and residential distance eligibility criteria (DOC, 250KB).

In special circumstances (DOC, 240KB) consideration can be given to applicants who do not fully meet residential distance criteria.

For more information about eligibility criteria:

  • phone 1800 248 997 (freecall for rural Queensland only) or 13 QGOV (13 74 68)
  • email lafhas@det.qld.gov.au.

Remote Area Disability Supplement (RADS) eligibility

To be eligible for the RADS you also need to:

  • ensure your child has been identified through the department’s Education Adjustment Program
  • prove their travel, tuition and boarding costs are significantly greater than those of students without disability and are in excess of total assistance available from all government agencies—read page 3 of the LAFHAS allowances guide (DOC, 253KB).

Bypass schools

A bypass school is a rural or remote Queensland state school that may not deliver the programs a senior student needs to complete their chosen areas of study.

Students applying for the LAFHAS can disregard a bypass school when they complete the application’s residential distance criteria.

list of bypass schools (PDF, 149KB) is featured in the bypass schools procedure.

Payment details

Half of the LAFHAS annual entitlements are paid in Semester 1 and the other half in Semester 2:

  • Semester 1—monthly payments will start after your application is approved and school attendance is confirmed.
  • Semester 2—monthly payments will start once school attendance is confirmed.

Allowances are paid by electronic funds transfer as follows:

  • RATuA—paid direct to boarding schools to offset school tuition fee accounts
  • RATrA, RAA and RADS—paid direct to applicants’ nominated bank accounts.

Use the LAFHAS travel calculator to estimate your total allowance.

2017 LAFHAS rates list

Remote Area Tuition Allowance—benefits equal to total school tuition fees charged.

Year

Amount

Students in Years 1-6

up to $1,842 per year

Students in Years 7-12

up to $2,652 per year

Remote Area Tuition Allowance—additional benefits of 50c per $1.00 of tuition fee charged in excess of above benefit equal to total school tuition fees charged, up to a maximum total allowance.

Year

Maximum total allowance

Students in Years 1-6

$3,678 per year

Students in Years 7-12

$5,296 per year

Remote Area Travel Allowance

Item

Annual entitlement

Minimum allowance

$139 per student

First 500 km

$0.79 per km

Additional kilometres

$1.30 per km

Maximum allowance

$1,696

Remote Area Allowance

Year

Amount

For Queensland Agricultural Training College* students – studies in agriculture equivalent to Years 11 and 12.

* Students attending one of the campuses of the Queensland Agricultural Training College studying an eligible program.

$2,312 per student per year

Remote Area Disability Supplement

Year

Amount

 To compensate additional education costs incurred by students with disabilities to access school*

 * The Remote Area Disability Supplement is payable retrospectively, upon lodgement of receipts and where applicants can demonstrate, through documentary evidence, that travel, tuition and boarding accommodation costs are significantly greater than those of students without disabilities and are in excess of total assistance available from all government agencies. Additional tuition fee costs can only be considered if the student is a full-time boarding student at the school.

Up to $7,524

How to apply

You must submit a new LAFHAS application by 30 November 2017 to receive allowances.

You can apply:

Send your completed paper application by:

  • fax to (07) 3034 5890
    or
  • mail to

    School Financial Resourcing
    Department of Education and Training
    PO Box 15033 City East QLD 4002

Contact us

For more information:

  • phone 1800 248 997 (freecall for rural Queensland only) or 13 QGOV (13 74 68)
  • email lafhas@det.qld.gov.au.

Related links

*Please call 1800 248 997 (freecall for rural Queensland only) or 13 QGOV (13 74 68) if you would like someone to talk you through the process map.

Help for rural families

The Australian Government offers a range of support for rural families and students to help cover family expenses, including education and childcare costs.

The Isolated Children’s Parents’ Association is a voluntary national parent body dedicated to ensuring that geographically isolated students have equal access to education.

Queensland Academies Isolated Student Bursary

Queensland Academy students ineligible for the LAFHAS may be eligible for financial support through the Queensland Academies Isolated Student Bursary.

Student hostels

The Boarding Australia website lists hostels providing accommodation for isolated students so they can have daily access to schools.

Drought Supplement Payment

As part of the 2016/17 State Budget the Palaszczuk Government allocated $3.656 million over three financial years to the Department of Education and Training to support rural and remote Queensland students affected by drought. Payments will be made to automatically to eligible LAFHAS recipients whose home address is in a drought declared area, as per Department of Agriculture and Fisheries mapping.

If your property is Individually Droughted Property declared please contact the School Financial Resourcing team via email at LAFHAS@det.qld.gov.au to be considered for the drought supplement payment. Confirmation of your declaration will be made in conjunction with the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries prior to processing the payment.

Licence
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Australia (CC BY 3.0)
Last updated
31 May 2017
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