Back to School Allowance 2019

Back to School Clothing and Footwear Allowance (BTSCFA)

The new school year for 2019- 2020 doesn’t begin start until the end of August 2019  – but the  Back to School Allowance payments were due to be made during the week beginning 8th July 2019.

The official closing date for applications is 30 September 2019.

The BTSCFA amounts have increased in 2019 compared to 2018 – see below for rates.

The Department of Social Protection pays the Back to School Allowance payment automatically to most families that qualify.
Anyone that does qualify automatically should have received a letter during June 2019 stating when and how your Allowance will be paid.
If you didn’t get a letter – you will need to apply.
( Application details  further down the page).

All automatic payments should go out by 14th July. But payments for people who have to make new claims could be a lot later than that.
In 2018 there were delays in the processing of many new claims and some payments didn’t go out until September. So apply early to avoid delays.

Back to School Allowance Applications

From 24th June  2019, you can apply online for the Back to School Clothing and Footwear Allowance at  To apply online you must have a Public Services Card and a verified MyGovID account.  If you do not have a Public Services Card, you can make an appointment to get one at

Paper Application Forms for the Back to School allowance scheme were also made available from the 24th June 2019.

To get an application form you can text “BSCFA”  followed by your name and address to 51909, or you should be able to collect a form at any Intreo or Social Welfare office.

Or –  you can just print off the BSCFA1  downloadable  form here. 

The official closing date for applications is 30 September 2019.

Any person whose circumstances have changed should contact the Department of Social Protection at 1890 66 22 44 or   Tel: (071) 919 3318 or email

How Much Is the Back to School Allowance?

The back to school allowance for each eligible child aged 4-11 on or before 30 September 2019 is €150

The allowance for each eligible child aged 12-22 on or before 30 September 2019 is €275.

(Children aged between 18 and 22 years must be in full-time second-level education in a recognised school or college.)

Note:  Prior to 2011 the Back to School Allowance was  €305 for children over 12 and €200 for children under 12.  (A Back to school allowance of €200 for two and three-year-olds was abolished  in 2012.)

In 2017, Back to School payments of €49 million were made to 151,000 families in respect of over 275,000 children.

Who Qualifies?

To qualify for the Back to School Clothing and Footwear Allowance  you need to fulfil one of the criteria below:

  • Be getting a social welfare payment (including Working Family Payment (was previously called FIS) and Back to Work Family Dividend) or a Health Service Executive payment, or
  • Be taking part in an approved employment scheme (back to work scheme) or
  • Be Taking part in a recognised education or training course, or
    Involved in an Area Partnership Scheme, or
  • Attending a FET (formerly Fás) or, Fáilte Ireland training course.

There is also a means test  Full rules here

12 thoughts on “Back to School Allowance 2019

  1. Will it be in post office on Monday as a lot of people have already been paid into their bank accounts on Saturday

    • I actually phoned yesterday,and they said they were working on applications around that time and to expect a decision in 2-3 weeks. People have posted on other forums saying they applied online Monday of this week and it was in their bank this morning

  2. If you haven’t been told by letter that you are getting it you should apply.

  3. The TuS scheme does make you eleigible -( depending on other income.)
    To be sure of getting the allowance you should apply anyway.

  4. Hi , am on FIS I was paid last year ,a text message was sent to my phone around june last year and this year am so worried now because I haven’t gotten any text.

  5. Hello l never got my payment last year but did year before l was on a scheme I’d apaplied last year im on job seekers allowance, I’m hoping I’ll get it this year as hopefully wasn’t a mistake last year

    • You will get a letter if you qualify . If you don’t – you will need to apply .

  6. If your circumstances have changed you might not get it automatically. You should get a letter before 24th June to let you know. If you don’t get a letter you will need to apply – see article above for details of how and when.

  7. Yes – As it states in the article The allowance paid for each eligible child aged 12-22 on or before 30 September 2019 is :  €275.

  8. Domicillary Care is not one of the qualifying incomes .If you get carers benefit you may be eligible but it also depends on your total household income.
    Domicaillary Care allowance is not used in assessing your total income .
    Assessed household income has to be under €600.70 a week for a couple with one child or €637.70 with 2 children (add on 37.70 per child)
    see here for how Social Welfare assess inceom—Means-Assessment.aspx

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