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Apply for School Transport Assistance Scheme in Queensland

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Did you know? Queensland families can save hundreds of dollars when they apply for the school transport assistance scheme. It can help you cover the costs of transporting your kids to school! FOR REAL!!

This online scheme has been quietly rolling out since December 2019 and some families report receiving hundreds of dollars paid out to them for doing what they would do anyway, getting their kids to their primary or secondary school!

Eligibility school transport assistance scheme

Students may be eligible for school transport assistance if they:

  • have parents/guardians who are residents of Queensland
  • are independent students who are residents of Queensland
  • attend an approved school or an alternative program approved by the Queensland Department of Education
  • are younger than 19 years of age prior to commencing secondary study
  • are seeking transport assistance from one residential address and to one school facility
    • this address must be the principal place of residence of the student’s parent or guardian
    • for students with shared custody, parents must select one address to be used to assess STAS eligibility. For shared custody arrangements, the principal place of residence of only one parent/guardian can be nominated. It is the responsibility of parents/guardians to determine the principal place of residence used to assess eligibility for STAS.
  • are travelling more than 1 trip per week.

Distance requirements

Bus transport assistance

Students using their designated service who satisfy the general conditions previously listed may be eligible for bus travel assistance to and from school if they also meet the criteria below.

Distance eligible students:

To be eligible for distance based assistance:

  • primary school students must live more than 3.2 km from the nearest state primary school;
  • secondary school students must live more than 4.8 km from the nearest state secondary school;
  • students attending non-state schools must live more than the distance criteria from both the nearest state and non-state school of the type attended.

Rail travel assistance

All students are eligible for travel at reduced fares on the Citytrain network. Some students may be eligible for a fully funded rail ticket if they qualify for safety-net assistance.

To be eligible for this a student must be listed on a:

  • Health Care Card issued by Centrelink, or
  • Pensioner Concession Card issued by Centrelink, or
  • Department of Veterans’ Affairs Pensioner Concession Card;OR
  • be a student placed under a Care and Protection Order by the Department of Child Safety

Conveyance allowance (private car transport)

In some areas it is necessary for parents to make private arrangements for the transport of their students to and from school, or to and from a bus stop or train station. In certain circumstances these families may be eligible for the payment of conveyance allowance to assist with the cost of this travel.

To be eligible for conveyance allowance:

  • primary school students must live more than 3.2 km from the nearest state primary school;
  • secondary school students must live more than 4.8 km from the nearest state secondary school;
  • students attending non-state schools must live more than the distance criteria from both the nearest state and non-state school of the type attended.

All measurements are by the shortest trafficable route and are based on the nearest school which offers the required year level.

Conveyance allowance may also be available for students who live outside the Greater Brisbane area and who attend non-state schools irrespective of the distance to the nearest state school. Additional conveyance allowance is also available for eligible students who live on a drought declared primary producing property.

Eligibility for conveyance allowance is dependent on other factors such as the types of bus services operating in the area and the distance to the nearest bus service.

Find more specific details about distance and eligibility here.

Students are not eligible to apply for school transport assistance if they are:

  • pre-prep and kindergarten students
  • mature age students
  • overseas, interstate and exchange students
  • TAFE students
  • distance education students
  • tertiary students.

RELATED: Apply for 40 other benefits for your family here.

How to apply for the school transport assistance scheme

A little preparation before you start your application will make filling out the online form a straightforward activity.

We recommend you:

  • watch the applying online for school transport assistance video below for an overview of the application process and some useful tips
  • find out the type of assistance available to apply for online
  • read the terms and conditions and make sure you are eligible to apply.

Find out how to apply online

If you don’t have access to the internet or a computer check with your school or local library for access or you can complete a paper application for the type of assistance needed.

Overview of the application process

Rules of school transport assistance applications

  • Applications are only accepted for the current school year.
  • Applications can be submitted for the next school year from 1st October.
  • A new application is required when any of the following changes occur:
  • a student changes school or residential address during the year
  • the student’s mode of transport or travel pattern changes (for example, frequency of travel)
  • the student moves from primary to secondary school.

Bus and ferry travel approval issued by the operator is interim approval only. Final approval for assistance can only be granted by the Department of Transport and Main Roads.

The Department of Transport and Main Roads will advise successful applicants in writing. Unsuccessful applicants should be advised by the school travel operator nominated in their submitted application.

Types of assistance available in the online application

You can apply online for the following types of assistance:

  • Bus and ferry transport (including Safety-net)
  • Rail transport (including G:Link)
  • Private transport (conveyance allowance)
  • Drought (additional conveyance allowance)

The following types of assistance aren’t available online:

Before you apply online

You can apply online for assistance for different modes of transport including train, bus, ferry, private transport, and travel with multiple school transport operators.

Before you start your online application:

  • Collect the relevant information you need, such as:
    • watch the applying online for school transport assistance video
    • read the terms and conditions and eligibility
    • Centrelink Pension, Healthcare or Department of Veterans Affairs concession card details for yourself and student/s (if applying for safety-net assistance)
    • your bank account details including BSB, account number and name, and bank address (if applying for private transport assistance)
    • electronic document files to support claims for drought assistance and independent student status.
  • Work out the distance from your residence to the closest state school and attending school (if this is different to the closest state school).
  • Confirm the school transport operator/s if your child is travelling by bus or ferry.
  • During the application you will be asked to confirm you have read and understood the terms and conditions and eligibility requirements detailed on this page and the introduction to the online application. Penalties may apply for false information.

Your application – getting it right:

Make sure you keep a record of application ID and PIN to retrieve your application. You can enter details for up to 5 children—a new online application is required for additional children. Applications can be for up to 2 bus and ferry operators per child on the same application form—a third operator will need a new application form.

You will need to fill out a new application if you have changes to the following:

  • residential address
  • school
  • mode of transport
  • frequency of travel
  • or move from primary to secondary school.

Apply now for school transport assistance scheme

Not eligible? Other transport assistance

Apply for 40 other benefits for your family here.

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