Australian Education Act 2013


The Australian Education Act 2013 (the Act) is the principal legislation for the provision of Australian Government funding to government and non-government schools. The Act commenced on 1 January 2014 and was last amended on 23 June 2017 to give effect to the Quality Schools package, with changes to funding arrangements commencing from 1 January 2018.

The Act was amended to support a funding model that is transparent, consistent and needs-based. The updated legislative framework will help guide a new national, collaborative approach to school reforms, based on clear objectives and targets for performance.

The Australian Education Regulation 2013 (the Regulation) provides more detail to support the operation of the Act. It outlines the financial accountability and other conditions that are required in order to receive funding under the Act. The Regulation was also amended as part of the implementation of the Quality Schools package.

The Act sets out the rights and responsibilities of organisations in order for them to receive Australian Government funding for the purposes of school education. These organisations include approved authorities for schools, block grant authorities and non-government representative bodies. The Act also sets out broad expectations for compliance, to ensure funding accountability to the Commonwealth and to school communities.

Approved Authorities

An approved authority is a legal entity that the Australian Government has approved to receive and administer Commonwealth funding for one or more schools.

The approved authority for a government school is its relevant state or territory government. The approved authority for a non-government school is the body corporate approved by the Minister for that school.

Information and guidance materials available to assist approved authorities are as follows:

Block Grant authorities

Block grant authorities are bodies corporate the Australian Government has approved to administer capital grants for non-government schools to improve capital infrastructure at those schools.

There are two block grant authorities in each state: one for Catholic schools and one for independent schools. In the Northern Territory and in the Australian Capital Territory, there are joint block grant authorities for Catholic and independent schools.

Block grant authorities must comply with the Act and Regulations, including the requirement to comply with:

For further information, including contact details for each block grant authority, you may wish to visit on the Capital grants for non-government schools page.

Non-government representative bodies

Non-government representative bodies are bodies corporate approved by the Australian Government, in order to, among other things, receive funding under the Act to support the implementation of the Australian Government’s school education reform priorities in non-government schools.

Non-government representative bodies must comply with the Act and Regulations, including the requirement to comply with:

National School Resourcing Board

The Government has established the National School Resourcing Board to provide greater independent oversight of Commonwealth school funding to increase transparency and accountability. The Board will review the compliance of approved authorities with their funding obligations under the Act. These reviews will provide confidence that states, territories and other approved authorities are complying with their obligations under the Act.