School operations

Student Resource Package — School Specific Programs

Location Index funding (Reference 39)

The purpose of this funding line is to offset the costs of non-teaching services in rural schools by supplementing the added costs that rural schools incur for goods and services associated with freight and communications.

Funding is provided to schools with campuses meeting the eligibility criteria. Allocations comprise a base component and a per student component, which varies based on the campus’ Location Index.


Campuses of the following type and location are eligible for LIF funding.

Campus type:

  • Primary
  • Secondary
  • Primary/Secondary Combined
  • Special
  • Camp
  • Deaf.


  • outside the ‘Major Cities of Australia’ Remoteness Area category, as defined by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), with reference to the 2016 Accessibility/Remoteness Index of Australia (ARIA)

Funding is calculated at the Indicative, Confirmed and Revised cycles, funding is allocated through cash funding.


Schools are funded according to a Location Index. This is comprised of 3 components:

  • distance from Melbourne (as measure from GPO)
  • distance from nearest provincial centre with a population of more than 20,000 people (as measured according to UCL 2016)
  • the nearest primary or secondary campus, as appropriate, above the rural school size adjustment factor threshold

Note: Nearest campus required to have some of same enrolment type and have enrolments above RSAF thresholds.

Each of these 3 factors are given an equal weighting. The Location Index (rounded to 4 decimal places) is then constructed relative to the campus in Victoria with highest total of distances.

Each eligible school campus receives a base allocation plus a per student allocation.

Primary Enrolment Allocation

Allocation = Base + (Location Index × [Primary Student Enrolment] × [Per student Rate])

Note: Enrolments are capped at 300 primary students.

Secondary Enrolment Allocation

Allocation = Base + (Location Index × [Secondary Student Enrolment] × [Per student Rate])

Note: Enrolments are capped at 500 secondary students.

Campuses with Primary and Secondary enrolments will receive a primary and secondary allocation.

Rates 2022

  • Base – $677.76
  • Per Student Rate – $107.26

Other relevant information

It is intended that location measures will be updated with the release of new ABS data every 5 years. The next release is scheduled in 2021.

All distances are measured via road.

ARIA+ is a continuous index, which the ABS uses to define the Remoteness Area categories, including: Major Cities of Australia, Inner Regional Australia, Outer Regional Australia, Remote Australia and Very Remote Australia. These categories of remoteness are based on a measure of relative access to services. Further information can be found at Defining Remoteness Areas.

To determine a campus’ Remoteness Area category and UCL boundary, use the ABS map tool.

To determine a school’s geographic parameters, refer to Steps to determine a school’s geographic parameters.

Additionally, schools that may be eligible for transition should refer to: Transition Funding (Rural) (Ref 126).

Reference 39 of the SRP Guide, providing information on location index funding including rates

Reviewed 16 January 2022

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