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Parenting plans and the start of the new school year

One of many issues for Florida parents this time of year is the taking care of their child's education. With the start of the new school year, children are often enrolled in new schools and have differing schedules than during the prior school year.

Though couples that are still together may be on the same page concerning the handling of such matters, divorced parents may each have separate opinions on how such items should be accomplished. And unfortunately, language in court decrees and marital stipulations (concerning both child custody and visitation) are often vague concerning such requirements.

Many such issues can be anticipated in advance. Agreeing as to who pays for what, which parent should be the main contact for schools, deciding what extracurricular activities are appropriate for the child, and what school the child should attend are questions that can be anticipated when the divorce papers are prepared by the lawyers.

Though this may all seem straight forward, parents can sometimes complicate even the most basic matters when it comes to raising a child. Parents need to remain focused on what is in the best interest of the child and not involve themselves in playing games by making matters difficult for the other parent.

It's always a good idea to keep the other parent informed about whatever is going on, to coordinate events so that both parents can be involved in the child's education, be straight up when dealing with expenses and work together whenever possible. Though many such matters can be revisited in court, the better strategy is for parents to cooperate with each other.

Source: The Washington Times, "Back to school tips for divorced parents," by Myra Fleischer, August 20, 2012

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