Back to School with a New Custody Arrangement

Summer never seems long enough in New Jersey. One minute, you’re stepping onto the beach for the first time and the next, you’re in a department store picking out notebooks and pens for the upcoming year. Adjusting from a summertime schedule to the academic year can be a difficult transition, especially when you and your child have a new custody or parenting time schedule in place.

Child custody schedules are developed with your child’s academic and personal well-being in mind. Staying on track at school is much easier for your child when you and your former spouse are kept up to date and in agreement about all academic issues. To make the transition from summer to the new school year easy for every member of your family, keep the following points in mind:

Set Uniform Rules

Talk to your former spouse about expectations regarding your child’s grade point average and participation in sports and other extracurricular activities. Compromise with and support him or her – if your former spouse requires your child to maintain a certain grade point average to play sports, do not sign your child up for sports behind your former partner’s back if he or she does not meet this requirement.

Take an Interest in your Child’s Schoolwork

Go to Back to School Night. Go to parent-teacher conferences. Contact your child’s teacher if you have a question or a concern about what is going on in the classroom. Do not assume that your former spouse will handle all academic issues – to be an involved parent, you need to take an interest in your child’s schooling. If you can, help him or her with homework and projects.

Contribute Financially

Do not make your former partner do all of the back-to-school shopping. Your child will need school supplies and in most cases, new clothes for the upcoming school year. Work with him or her to delegate shopping duties.

Be Flexible

Sometimes, a big project or a school trip will require you to alter your parenting time or custody schedule. Be prepared for this to happen and when it does, be flexible. Just like you deviated from your parenting time or custody schedule in the summer to allow for vacations and summer activities, you might have to deviate slightly during the school year. Cooperate with your child and former spouse and if you anticipate needing to alter the schedule, discuss it with them as far as possible in advance.

For more guidance on adjusting to life after a divorce and other child custody issues, call The Law Office of Eric B. Hannum Esq., LLC. at 732-370-9596. When you call, you can schedule a consultation with a member of our firm to discuss your family’s unique needs. We are proud advocates for New Jersey families throughout Burlington, Ocean, Monmouth, Mercer, and Middlesex counties.

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