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Minister to meet with students on Youth Allowance.

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The Hon Julia Gillard MP 

Minister for Education. Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations 

Minister for Social Inclusion 

Deputy Prime Minister 

20 August, 2009  

Media release 

Minister to meet with students on Youth Allowance 

The Minister for Education, Julia Gillard, has today announced that she will meet with students from around Australia to discuss the proposed changes to Youth Allowance at Parliament House on Monday.

The Minister will meet with gap year students from a number of electorates and their local Members of Parliament, including the Member for Eden Monaro Mike Kelly, Member for Braddon Sid Sidebottom, Member for Corangamite Darren Cheeseman, Member for Ballarat Catherine King, Member for Solomon Damian Hale, member for Capricornia Kirsten Livermore and Member for Lyne Rob Oakeshott.

The round table will also include the Chair of Universities Australia, Professor Peter Coaldrake, President of the Council of Australian Postgraduate Associations, Nigel Palmer and the National Union of Students National President, David Barrow.

The proposed changes to Youth Allowance will benefit more than 100,000 students. Changes to the Parental Income Test threshold will mean that many students will no longer be encouraged to take a gap year in order to be eligible for assistance.

Studies show that around 30 per cent of gap year students choose not to commence their university studies.

The Government is committed to increasing the number of Australians accessing higher education. The changes to Youth Allowance recommended by the Bradley Review into Higher Education are designed to ensure that the Allowance is targeted to the students who need it most.

Under the proposed changes, around 150,000 students would also receive a $2,254 per year start-up scholarship to assist with expenses at the beginning of each academic year.

More than 14,000 students who are required to move to study would be eligible to receive a relocation scholarship of $4,000 in their first year, and $1,000 each subsequent year.

Together with the changes to the Parental Income Test, the Rudd Government will ensure more students receive Youth Allowance and more students will receive more assistance to study.

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