Schoolkids Bonus fails to help some students

Tom Huntley

DESPITE hefty payments being rolled out in January to help parents get their children back to school, many were still missing basic school supplies this year.

The Federal Government paid parents their Schoolkids Bonus ahead of the start of the school year this year, with parents of primary school students receiving $410 a child and secondary student $820.

A woman who works with children in the Warwick state school system said it was disappointing to see a portion of children who were still not adequately prepared for school.

She said some students were missing only a part of their stationery lists but others did not a have a single item.

"The families who are normally responsible were very responsible and some parents have said the payments really helped them this year," she said.

"Those people who are characterised by not having what they needed still needed us to help them."

The school worker said one Warwick school needed hundreds of dollars spent on them, as well as utilising donations from St Mark's Anglican Church.

"It was very disappointing and it isn't something you can do a lot about - it is just one of those unfortunate things," she said.

The woman said despite the new payment system, it was as important as ever for schools to receive support from charity organisations and community members.

"It is really important for children to be ready to learn and have what they need," she said.

"It can be an issue of social inclusion and can affect the kids' self-confidence but it is also good for us to be able to show we are a caring community.

"Even though parents have the primary responsibility we stand in the gap and help the children who don't have a say in how the family income is spent."



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