It’s great to see the Australian Government going out of its way to ensure young people are equipped with an understanding of the tax and superannuation systems – what their obligations will be as they enter the workforce, and why the systems are essential for the community and country as a whole.

This is important because although tax knowledge and super is a recognised critical life skill, research commissioned by the ATO shows that many young people leave school without sufficient understanding of either. They may not even know how to complete a tax return or how to seek help about tax and superannuation. 

But it’s not only young people that don’t have sufficient understanding of the tax and superannuation system – the same research found that one in five parents (20%) knew little-to-nothing about the Australian taxation system or superannuation. Similarly, 20% said they did not feel confident explaining it to their kids. Over half of parents surveyed (54%) said they hadn’t had any discussions around tax and superannuation with their child. And interestingly, only half of the parents (49%) felt they knew ‘a great deal’ about their personal finances.

Despite this lack of knowledge, 95% of parents and the wider community believed that learning about tax and super should be included in the school curriculum. 

To help meet this need, the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) offers an entire education zone on tax and superannuation, which includes modules for the classroom, videos, interactive webinars and even in-person visits to schools by ATO educators. Developed in collaboration with educators, there are activities for primary students and secondary school students, as well as resources for teachers.

The ATO’s primary school resource, Paying It Forward teaches values and actions to help establish strong foundations for learning about tax and super.

The secondary school resource, Tax, Super + You is a complete learning management system with animated and interactive elements designed to engage.

If, like many Australian workers, you didn’t have the opportunity to learn about the tax and superannuation system when you were at school, check out the self-learning videos available at the education zone. You’ll find a diversity of useful information, from how to create a myGov account and manage your tax and super online, through to an explanation of the difference between an employee and a contractor. There is even a video explaining the definition of a sharing economy.

The Ayers Group Can Help

Keeping on top of your taxation and superannuation obligations is essential to ensure you are working within the law and to avoid harsh penalties. 

Experts at the Ayers Group are also on hand to help you understand your tax and superannuation obligations and to provide you with efficient, cost-effective administrative services to ensure you remain compliant. Contact an expert at the Ayers Group today.


Reference: Robyn Rutley, Richard Bishop and Annabel Gurney, Teaching the Youth.
Kantar Public Research Report. Prepared for the ATO – June 2018