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Tips for divorced parents for the start of the school year

We are almost a third of the way through August, which means the start of school is not far around the corner for many children here in Texas. As the first day of school approaches, parents may have concerns regarding how this upcoming school year will go for their kids. This can particularly be the case if a big and impactful event occurred in the family’s life over the summer, such as a divorce.

When it comes to a kid’s first school year after a parental divorce, the child’s parents may be worried about whether the divorce will negatively impact their child’s school performance and what their child gets from their school experience. They also might be worried about the potential for scheduling issues and disputes to arise with their ex in relation to school activities.

Thankfully, there are things divorcing parents can do in preparation for the school year to try to help cut down on the chances of the divorce causing school-related problems. This includes:

  • Having an honest discussion with their child’s teacher about the divorce and their child, so the teacher knows the situation and thus is better equipped to help the child with their education and school experience.
  • If they think it would be helpful for their child, asking the teacher if they would be willing to have a discussion with their kid one-on-one about school-related issues the divorce might impact.
  • Taking actions to help the child feel secure and safe when it comes to school-related matters.
  • Looking into whether there are any support resources available at their child’s school that are particular to children with divorced parents, such as support groups for children who have experienced a parental divorce.
  • Checking the child custody agreement terms prior to the school year. There are certain school-related things a child custody agreement might touch on, such as after-school activities and transportation to and from school. Knowing and understanding such terms could help a parent avoid actions that could inadvertently lead to a school-related dispute with their ex over whether the agreement was in fact followed. When a parent is unclear on what a given child custody term requires of them, one source of clarification they could go to is a skilled child custody attorney.

Source: The Huffington Post, “Do You Worry How Divorce Will Affect Your Child In School?,” Laurie Hollman, July 28, 2016

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