ATO providing financial education resources for schools

The ATO is helping teachers add tax and super to their classes this year with dedicated educational resources.

In partnership with the Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA) and the Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC), the ATO has developed resources that align to the Australian Curriculum for students in years seven to 10.

“Understanding tax and super is an important skill for young Australians, and we are pleased it is now part of the Australian curriculum,” Assistant Commissioner Kath Anderson said.

“We want to make it easy for teachers to help their students learn about the tax and super system, so we’ve designed a range of resources for them to use which are available from our website. Teachers can learn about how our resources align to the Australian Curriculum through ACARA’s new Curriculum Connections.

“Our educational resources include Tax Super and You, an online teaching resource containing lesson plans and interactive activities, as well in-school visits, webinars and videos.

ATO staff are also available to conduct school visits and webinars to cover a range of topics including tax file numbers, preparing for work, how to lodge tax returns, and how to use our teaching resources.

Ms Anderson said the ATO can also tailor presentations for students upon request.

For more information about Curriculum Connections, visit resources.australiancurriculum.edu.au/curriculum-connectionsExternal

Deductions against government assistance payments are no longer available

In the 2011-12 Budget the government announced that it would make changes to disallow deductions against government payments.

On 27 June 2012 these changes came into effect when the legislation received royal assent. The new law is effective 1 July 2011 and expenses that relate to meeting the ongoing requirements to receive certain government assistance payments can not be claimed as a deduction.

Government assistance payments that are no longer eligible for deductions include:

  • Austudy
  • ABSTUDY
  • Newstart Allowance

This brings the long fight by the ATO against deductions from student allowances to an end. The ATO lost the court cases so the government chnaged the last. See http://thomsonhall.com.au/wordpress/tag/education/ for ealier parts of this story.

Govt to close education expense deduction claims

As reported earlier , the High Court ruled in 2010 that receipients of Youth Allowance and certain other benefits that are paid only if the beneficiary is undertaking a course of education are allowed to claim a deduction for the costs of undertaking the course

The Australian Government has now released draft amendments to disallow deductions against taxable government assistance payments that are eligible for a rebatable benefit following the High Court’s decision in FCT v Anstis [2010] HCA 40.

Government assistance payments that are currently eligible for the beneficiary rebate include, but are not limited to:

  • Austudy
  • ABSTUDY
  • Newstart Allowance
  • Youth Allowance (student)
  • Youth Allowance (jobseeker)

The amendment is proposed to have effect from 1 July 2011.