Yanco Agricultural High School

A quality secondary education in an historic rural setting

Telephone02 6951 1500


Scholarships and assistance

Assistance for Isolated Children's Scheme

The Assistance for Isolated Children's Scheme is administered by Centrelink (Department of Human Services) and provide financial assistance for parents and carers of students who cannot attend their nearest state school because of geographical isolation, disability or special health needs.

Parents and Carers may receive basic boarding allowance, distance education supplement, second home allowance, pensioner education supplement and possibly additional boarding allowance.

These payments are usually free of income and assets tests, and can be paid directly to the school.

If you think you may be eligible please contact Centrelink for more information, visit their website or talk to our School Administration Manager for more information.


Link to Centrelink AIC Website: AIC information and forms


Boarding Scholarship for Isolated Students (BSIS) and Living Away From Home Allowance (LAFHA)

NSW Department of Education and Communities administers two financial support programs for eligible families who must board their children away from home to obtain secondary education.

These are the Boarding Scholarship for Isolated Students (BSIS) and Living Away From Home Allowance (LAFHA).

The BSIS provides assistance to students in Years 7 to 12 from rural areas who are disadvantaged by

·         a low family income and

·         geographic isolation where the location of the family home in NSW severely affects the student's access to secondary schooling, and

·         whose circumstances require that they board away from home to attend government secondary school.

The LAFHA provides assistance to eligible families who must board their children away from home to access secondary education. Essential conditions are:

·         The student's home must be in NSW

·         The student must be living away from home to attend an appropriate secondary school in NSW, QLD, SA, VIC, or the ACT

·         The student must be following a normal secondary course of study.

 The basic criteria relate to income and distance. There is also provision for other circumstances such as a medical condition to be considered where relevant.



A student is eligible if one of the following rules is met:

•           Home is at least 56km from the nearest government school

•           Home is at least 16km from the nearest government school and at least 4.5km from the nearest government transport service to that school

•           The student does not have reasonable daily access to the school for at least 20 days of the school year or the return journey to school exceeds three hours travelling time.

If the student meets one of the above rules, they are eligible for a non means tested Boarding Allowance.  There is no asset testing on this allowance.

•           The allowance may be paid directly to the school and deducted from the term fees or to the parents.  (Note:  For Boarding Scholarships for Isolated Students Scholarship holders, this allowance must be directed to the school)

•           Assistance for Isolated Children is paid quarterly in advance.

•           Keep copies of all documentation and measure distances carefully as they will be checked.

•           Applications are made to Centrelink.

•           Assistance for Isolated Children is an access payment, not a welfare payment.

Closing date for applications for the full year - 31st March



This Scholarship assists eligible students from rural areas who are disadvantaged by a low family income and geographic isolation.  Applications for students who receive Assistance for Isolated Children, ABSTUDY or Youth Allowance from Centrelink will not be considered.  The scholarship will assist a student who:

•           wishes to attend and board at a NSW government agricultural high school.

•           wishes to attend a specialist NSW government secondary school that conducts selection procedures and who would need to board away from home to do so.

•           needs to board at a school term hostel to access a NSW government secondary school

Applications close early March




•           Meets the means test

•           Home is at least 48km from the nearest government school

Note:   A student who does not meet the 48km rule and cannot study Agriculture at their local school in the required grade may be deemed eligible for the allowance if they take two agricultural subjects

A student may receive the Assistance for Isolated Children as well as the NSW Living Away from Home Allowance if they meet both criteria.  Family Tax Benefit will be paid for a student in receipt of Living Away from Home Allowance.

Apply before 30th June to obtain the full allowance.

Applications not accepted after 30th September.



•           A student cannot receive Assistance for Isolated Children or Abstudy as well as Youth Allowance.

•           You can receive Youth Allowance and Living Away from Home Allowance.

•           Youth Allowance is means and assets tested.  In addition, if the family is in a partnership, trust or company, they are also subjected to an Actual Means Test.

•           Youth Allowance starts from the date the application is received.  It will not be backdated.

•           Apply approximately two weeks before the students 16th birthday.

•           If eligible for $1 a week Youth Allowance, you are then eligible for Rent Assistance based on the rent payable.  In boarding schools this relates to   of the boarding fee.

•           Actual means test determines the level of support available to the students.

•           Youth Allowance is paid fortnightly and cannot be paid by the term in advance.

•           Family Tax Benefit will not be paid for a student in receipt of Youth Allowance.

Applications are made to Centrelink. 



These bursaries are structured to supplement the financial assistance provided by the NSW and Commonwealth Governments.  These include the Assistance for Isolated Students, Youth Allowance, Living Away from Home Allowance and Boarding Scholarships for Isolated Students.  The principle type of assistance for secondary school students is

•           Boarding bursaries - $1000.00 per annum to subsidise a student’s   accommodation.  These are paid directly to the school each half year.

Application criteria:

•           Geographic isolation from schools and services

•           Family income and assets.  The latest available Australian Taxation Office Notice of Assessment must be forwarded with the application form.  Do not send the tax return.

•           Other special and exceptional circumstances including medical cases.

•           Students from remote border areas (VIC, SA and QLD) may apply but must attend a country school in NSW.

Application forms made available to the school in November and must be received by the Foundation by early February.



Provides financial assistance to students identified as Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander.  Travel and other special assistance is also available to eligible students.  State that the child is at Boarding School. 

Applications are made to Centrelink.

An Abstudy Helpline is available - Telephone 132317



Our scholarships help students overcome barriers to achievement created by social and economic disadvantage. We help students to cover the extra costs of public schooling and provide them with opportunities to extend their talents and pursue their aspirations. Our scholarships and awards also acknowledge and reward academic excellence.


Apply online via our application portal. For further information, please read the information available for each scholarship on the relevant pages and  Scholarship Terms and Conditions.

Other financial assistance

If you would like to have a confidential discussion regarding other possible financial assistance please contact our School Administration Manager by phone on 02 6951 1500.