Education allowance automatic from now on

If you are already receiving the Groeipakket (Growth Package), you do not need to submit another application. Our Groeipakket coaches automatically investigate whether you are entitled to the selective participation allowance. From this autumn, you will receive the allowance in your account if you are entitled to it. Could not be easier, could it?

The education allowance is paid between September and December. If you have not received a payment in December to which you believe you are entitled, please do not hesitate to get in touch with us.

Please note that, if your child is going to a vocational school or university, you will no longer receive an education allowance. You may instead be entitled to a study grant, a so-called scholarship. You must apply for the scholarship through the Ministry of Education. You can find all the information at studietoelagen.be.

Do not confuse the education allowance with the school bonus! Every family automatically receives the school bonus in August. The amount of this payment varies according to age.

Not receiving the Groeipakket?

Do you live in Brussels, Wallonia or in our neighbouring countries? And does your child go to an educational institution recognised, financed or subsidised by the Flemish Community? If so, please apply for the selective participation allowance using the button below.

Apply for your selective participation allowance
Selectieve participatietoeslag

When are you entitled to receive an education allowance?

If your child is at least 3 years old, attends preschool, primary school or secondary education in Flanders or Brussels or is following an HBO5 Nursing training course  and is at a school recognised, subsidised or financed by the Flemish Community, then you are entitled to an education allowance if:

  • Your child is Belgian or is entitled to live in Belgium;
  • Your child is registered at a school and attends school regularly; and
  • Your family income meets the conditions. For more explanation on what this means, see below.
  • Non-Belgian children who attend a school recognised by Flanders may, subject to certain conditions, also be entitled to an education allowance.

Children who are home-educated, educated in a hospital, receiving second-chance education (CVO) or are privately educated (except at Eureka, Leerwijzer, Safe and Sint-Ignatiusschool) are not entitled to education allowance.

The education allowance is available until the child is 22. If your son or daughter is following an HBO5 nursing training course or attending a special needs education establishment (BUSO), there is no age limit. Important: for HBO5 Nursing and BUSO students over the age of 25, please contact us!

Does your family income meet the conditions?

There’s a 3-step process to find out:

  • Step 1: Exactly how much is your income?
  • Step 2: What is your family’s personal hardship score?
  • Step 3: How much is your “outside use” cadastral income (rateable value of property used for “other purposes”)?

Step 1: Is your family’s annual income below the maximum threshold?

When calculating this, the government looks at the income of the family in which the child is living on 31 December. The following people’s incomes are counted when calculating the family income:

  • Both cohabiting parents or guardians; or
  • The parent or guardian and the person with whom the parent or guardian lives together constitute a de facto family; or
  • The married, single or independent student and the person with whom the student lives together constitute a de facto family.

The income is the total sum of these sources of income and benefits:

  • for employees: gross taxable income, plus professional expenses and/or social benefits. In order to allow for holiday pay and year-end bonuses, we multiply the taxable monthly income by the factor 14/12;
  • for self-employed people: net taxable income, multiplied by the factor 100/80;
  • Social benefits from health insurance;
  • Unemployment benefits;
  • Pensions;
  • Integration income or equivalent;
  • Income replacement allowance (Inkomensvervangende tegemoetkoming, IVT);
  • All other taxable benefits;
  • 80% of money received for maintenance;
  • 3 x the indexed outside use cadastral income;
  • 1 x indexed cadastral income for own professional purposes;

The following income and benefits are not counted as part of the family income:

  • All allowances from the Groeipakket;
  • Child maintenance payments;
  • Movable securities;
  • Income and holiday pay from a flexi-job;
  • Meal and eco-vouchers;
  • Payments for helping third parties or the elderly, integration payments for people with disabilities, reimbursements by the Flemish health insurance;
  • Reimbursement for childcare paid for by Kind en Gezin;
  • Flat-rate payments for guardianship of unaccompanied foreign minors;
  • Arrears relating to a previous year;
  • Severance payment for subsequent years and advance holiday pay.

MyFamily receives this information from the Belgian Federal Public Service Finance. Our income calculations are based on the most recently available personal tax return. For the 2019-2020 academic year, this will be your 2017 income.

Step 2: What is your family’s personal hardship score?

We also take your family’s personal hardship into account. Income alone does not give the complete picture.

We express personal hardship in points. Points are awarded for family members who are dependants, registered disabled (66%), studying, etc. The more points your family has, the higher your family income may be while still being eligible to receive an education allowance.

Just as with income, we calculate the personal hardship score of the family in which a child is living on 31 December of the current school year.

MyFamily_gezin met kind

Step 3: How much is your the rateable value of any property that you own and that is not used as your home or for your business, the so-called "outside use” cadastral income (CI)?

The final step is calculating your indexed outside use cadastral income. This means that we look at any buildings and land your family owns and in or on which you do not yourself live and which you do not need for your business.

If you do not have any such property, you may skip this step.

If your outside use CI is over €1,250 and the exact amount is too high compared to your family income (the so-called “CI test”), you are unfortunately not eligible for an education allowance.

The “CI test” is not applicable for families who are in receipt of an integration income (or equivalent). This applies if a large proportion (70% or more) of your income is made up of money for maintenance, a replacement income, income-replacing allowances and/or a survivor’s pension.

You can find more information about the maximum income threshold, the personal hardship points and the outside use CI on groeipakket.be.

Exception: Foster families

If a foster child stays with a foster family continuously for over one year, the child is exempt from these terms. This means the foster child is always entitled to the highest level of education allowance depending on the studies.

How high will the education allowance be that you receive?

That depends on the kind of education your child is in, your family income and the composition of your household on 31 December of the current school year.

If the student is married, single, or independent, higher amounts apply. This is also the case for students in full-time secondary education in a boarding school.

The selective participation allowance for preschool and primary education

 Minimum amount Maximum amount
Preschool  / € 103.70
Primary education € 121.01 € 188.19

The selective participation allowance for secondary education

Minimum amount Maximum amount
Married, self-employed or single student € 712.98 € 3,268.73
Student in the third year of the third level of full-time technical or vocational secondary education No boarding school: € 280.60 No boarding school: € 1,132.07
At boarding school: € 725.16 At boarding school: € 1,861.09
All other forms of secondary education No boarding school: € 233.75

No boarding school: € 943.30

At boarding school: € 604.31 At boarding school: € 1,550.86
Work-study system € 196.55 € 537.45
Higher vocational education (nursing training) No boarding school: € 829.80 No boarding school: € 1,212.27
At boarding school: € 829.80 At boarding school: € 3,640.66

Who receives the education allowance?

  • Does your child live in Flanders?
    Then we will pay education allowance to the people or person who receive(s) the Groeipakket.
  • If your child lives in Brussels, Wallonia or the German-speaking municipalities,
    we shall pay the education allowance to the parent(s) or guardian(s) with whom the child officially resides.
  • If your child lives abroad,
    we shall pay the education allowance to the parent(s) or guardian(s) with whom the child actually resides.

Always let MyFamily know if your family circumstances change.

Make sure you let us know if:

  • your child moves out and lives alone;
  • your child marries or starts cohabiting;
  • a child, for whom you receive a Groeipakket, joins your family;
  • a child entitled to a Groeipakket leaves your family;
  • there are people over the age of 25 in your family who are in higher education (including a second bachelor’s or master’s degree);
  • a member of your family is recognised as being disabled (this is only required if your family does not live in Flanders).

If you would like to find out more, our Groeipakket coaches will be happy to help you. Please contact us!

Stay informed about MyFamily? Sign In: