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1.1.P.418 Principal carer - study

Definition

Principal carers are considered to be fully meeting the activity test and participation requirements by participating in approved study of at least 30 hours per fortnight, including both contact and non-contact hours.

 

PP recipients and principal carer (YA, NSA, SpB) job seekers are able to fully meet their participation requirements and the activity test by complying with their EPP. One of the approved activities that principal carers can participate in to meet their requirements is approved study, however, such study must be included in the recipients EPP.

 

Approved study for NSA, YA & SpB recipients

Principal carers receiving NSA, YA (job seeker) and SpB who are fully meeting their activity test requirements through study need to comply with the following:

  • the course must be approved under Student Assistance Act 1973 section 5D, to be a secondary course, a tertiary course or a VET course for the purposes of that Act, and
  • the principal carer must have the approved course included in their EPP, and
  • the NSA general short course policy must be adhered to unless:
    • the principal carer is transferring from PPS to NSA or YA and has already commenced studying an approved course, OR
    • the job seeker is transferring to NSA or YA as partial capacity to work from the DSP transition group (granted DSP from 11 May 2005 to 30 June 2006) and has already commenced studying an approved course, OR
    • for NSA recipients only, the principal carer is single and is granted PES for an approved course.
  • the principal carer must study for at least 30 hours per fortnight, including both contact and non-contact study hours.

 

Act reference: Student Assistance Act 1973 section 5D Minister may determine secondary and tertiary courses etc.

 

Approved study for PP recipients

A PP recipient is able to fully meet their participation requirements through approved study of at least 30 hours per fortnight, including both contact and non-contact study hours. A PP recipient is able to participate in any course approved under Student Assistance Act 1973 section 5D. There are no course length restrictions on PP recipients who choose to study to meet their participation requirements. Those who begin an approved course prior to transferring to either NSA or YA (job seeker) are entitled to complete the course they started as long as they continue to meet the activity test by doing at least 30 hours of approved activities per fortnight.

 

Approved study for single principal carers on NSA who are receiving PES

An NSA recipient who is also a single principal carer, who has been granted PES, is able to fully meet their participation requirements through approved study of 30 hours per fortnight, including both contact and non-contact study hours. These single principal carers are able to participate in any course approved under Student Assistance Act 1973 section 5D for which they have been approved PES.

 

Combination of study with other activities

A principal carer receiving income support can fully meet their activity test/participation requirements through a combination of part-time study and part-time paid work, as long as the total combined hours are at least 30 hours per fortnight, where the study hours include both contact and non-contact hours.

 

Hours of study

When calculating the amount of time a recipient spends studying, the total number of contact and non-contact hours is combined.

 

Confirmation of a recipient's contact hours for the purposes of study requires checking the course outline produced by the educational institution.

 

In confirming a recipient's non-contact hours, a delegate should consider:

  • the course outline,
  • any assessable items that the person is required to complete in order to pass the course,
  • any additional indications of the time required to complete the course provided by the course educator,
  • the person's previous education experience, and
  • the person's circumstances.

 

Example: Sarah is a PP recipient and is studying a Bachelor of Information Technology at her local university. Sarah is currently studying 2 units per semester which consists of a total of 8 contact (tutorials and lectures) hours per week. In addition to the contact hours her course requires that she complete assignments, prepare for tutorials and read the assigned text. Sarah states that she spends at least 7 hours per week on these additional activities. In total Sarah is spending 15 hours per week (30 hours per fortnight) on her studies. Sarah's provider confirms that Sarah has a number of assignments to complete in addition to her tutorial work and also takes into account that Sarah has not studied for the past 5 years. Sarah's provider considers that an estimate of 7 hours non-contact per week is reasonable in Sarah's situation. Sarah's provider enters the course in Sarah's EPP and she is then considered to be fully meeting her participation requirements.

 

Act reference: SSAct section 541(1AA) Persons who comply with Employment Pathway Plan, section 601(4) Activity test, section 731A(11) Activity test

Social Security (Satisfaction of the Activity Test - Classes of Persons) (DEEWR) Specification 2009 (No 1)

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Last reviewed: 2 January 2014


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Last Edited: 02/12/2013 11:06:07 AM


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