January 1 changes for students and job seekers

School and university students are among those affected by changes taking effect from January 1. Source: AAP

School and university students, welfare recipients and politicians are among those affected by changes taking effect from January 1.

National changes taking effect from January 1:

Education

- Schools will shift to the Gonski 2.0 funding model, with a six-year transition for under-funded schools and a 10-year transition for over-funded schools

- Commonwealth funding for universities will be frozen at 2017 levels for two years

- Student payments for vocational education and training (VET) will be restricted to courses deemed a high national priority, meeting industry needs, addressing skills shortages and aligning with employment outcomes

- A national code of practice will come into effect for education and training providers to safeguard the hundreds of thousands of international students in Australia

- Relocation scholarships will no longer be offered to students shifting from overseas or studying abroad

- The period regional and remote students must earn the amount required to meet the self-supporting independence criteria for youth or ABSTUDY living allowance will be reduced from 18 to 14 months

Health

- A new vaccine against genital warts will be listed on the National Immunisation Program, guarding against more strains of the virus at a cheaper cost

- Defence veterans will be given greater access to antibiotics as well as heart disease and stroke medications through the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme

- The government will provide $5.7 million over four years to communities affected by contaminated water supplies following the use of potentially toxic firefighting foams at the Tindal RAAF Base in the NT

Welfare

- $10 million will be set aside for treatment services for job seekers affected by proposed drug testing trials, despite the pilot program being blocked in the Senate

- People receiving single parent payments will have their relationships verified to make sure they are not claiming income support they are not entitled to

- Youth allowance will rise by at least $4.60 and student payments by $8.30, while disability support will increase by upwards of $7

- Carers will receive an extra $2.40 a fortnight in line with inflation

Taxes

- The $12,000 special duty on imported used vehicles will be axed

Entitlements

- A new parliamentary expenses regime will come into effect after a number of MPs including Bronwyn Bishop and Sussan Ley were accused of misusing their entitlements

Source: AAP - SBS

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