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Education Maintenance Allowance

The Education Maintenance Allowance provides assistance to low-income families by helping with the costs associated with the education of their children. 

EMA applications are made by parents/guardians and submitted to schools. Schools have the responsibility to enter all EMA applications by the application close date onto the EMA Web System

Who is eligible for the EMA?

The EMA provides financial assistance to families on a low income to help with the cost of essential educational items such as textbooks, stationery, uniforms and excursions.

EMA is a means-tested payment - parents must hold a Centrelink/Veterans Affairs concession card to be eligible.

In 2014, the EMA amount is $200 for parents of eligible Prep students, $150 for parents of all other eligible primary school students, $300 for parents of eligible Year 7 students and $250 for parents of all other eligible secondary school students up to the age of 16. Children turning 16 years during the year, are paid on a pro rata basis until their birth month.

An EMA application form must be completed by eligible parents/guardians and submitted annually to schools. Schools have the responsibility to enter all EMA applications by the application close date onto EMA Web System (secure site)

How is EMA paid?

On the EMA parent application form, parents may choose from the following payment methods:

  • paid by direct deposit (Electronic Funds Transfer) into the parent’s bank account; or
  • paid to the school to be held as credit which the parent can use towards education expenses; or
  • paid by cheque which will be posted to the school for collection.

Who can parents and schools contact for more information about EMA?

Parents should contact their child’s school for information about their EMA payments. Information for parents is also available: Education Maintenance Allowance

Schools can email ema@edumail.vic.gov.au or phone 1800 060 970 (option 2) for EMA policy advice.

Access to State Schools Relief Committee support is available via the principal to assist with clothing/uniforms for families in financial hardship.

EMA Website For Parents

For information directed at parents/guardians about the Education Maintenance Allowance, see: Education Maintenance Allowance

Temporary Protection Visa/Bridging Visa holders/Community Detention

Please Note: Families on a Temporary Protection Visa (refugee status), Bridging Visa, or part of the Community Detention program are able to apply for the EMA under the Special Consideration category. A letter of support is needed from an appropriate welfare agency (e.g the Australian Red Cross) to verify their situation.

For further details, see: Information regarding Temporary Protection/Bridging Visas and the Community Detention program (docx - 26.71kb).

EMA support

For questions related to EMA, see the following pages:

For EMA system support, contact: