Trying to co-parent with an ex-spouse can be challenging, especially when it comes to school for the children involved. The best way to deal with school issues, as with any co-parenting considerations, is through communication. Read on to learn the best ways handle school-related issues as a divorced parent.
Pick-Up & Drop-Off
It is important that your child, their teacher, and administration know what the pick-up and drop-off schedule is. This is especially important if your child is in elementary or middle school.
Make sure to discuss the schedule with your ex-partner and work out something that is both workable and fair. Do the kids spend the weekend with dad? Let him pick the kids up from school on Friday. Does mom’s workday start later? Let her drop them off in the mornings.
Establish both biological parents & stepparents as guardians with the school. This is important not only for picking kids up, but for opening up lines of communication in general. Another option is to have you and your ex-spouse registered as guardians, while any current significant others are registered as emergency contacts.
An emergency contact can pick your child up or deliver things like forgotten lunchboxes or homework. Make sure that your ex-spouse is aware and approves of your current significant other’s emergency contact status.
As with any co-parenting task, successfully dealing with behavioral issues that may arise in the classroom depends on presenting a united front. If the school decides to call you or your ex-spouse, make sure that you are on the same page concerning your responses.
Make sure that the decided punishment is consistent between both houses. If there is no Internet access at mom’s house, there should be no Internet access at dad’s house. If your partner responds in a way you do not agree with, it is best to handle it privately.
Unless there is significant child support in the picture, it is best to try and split the back-to-school shopping – both clothes and school supplies – evenly. If child support is a factor, a portion of it should be budgeted for supplies and a portion budgeted for clothes for the year.
Generally, public schools in Florida require students to have planners. These planners are where students, teachers, and parents can communicate about homework. Discuss with your ex-spouse about who will handle planner checks to make sure homework is actually getting done.
This is important because with students shifting between houses, it is easy for homework assignments to slip through the cracks. Homework checks are essential for elementary school children.
Ultimately, communication and presenting a united front are the keys to handling co-parenting issues. Those do not change when it comes to handling school-related issues. If you communicate with your ex-spouse, current significant other, children, teachers, and the school, the road will remain smooth.