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Easing Back to School Time for Divorced Parents

Divorced parents co-parenting their kids may find the summer difficult because they must coordinate vacations and the kids' summer activities. The new school year, however, comes with busy schedules, including school conferences, sports practices and games, musical events and homework help. Sending a child back to school after a divorce can be extremely difficult and add stress to the usual hustle and bustle of the beginning of the school year.

Parents may have an easier time navigating co-parenting during the school year if everyone gets together at the end of the summer and looks at personal, work, activity and school calendars to set out the entire year. With the calendar in place, there will be less confusion and each party's time commitments will be clear.

Also, parents should make sure that they are both included on mailing or email lists. Do not depend on the other parent or the child for reminders about school events. It is not a good idea to use the child as a messenger between parents. Buying a set of school books for each home can also help ease the burden on the children and the parents.

With the stress of divorce, getting back into the school mode can be extra hard for children. Parents should make sure that they are focused on their child's needs at this time and not distracted by the divorce. One tip from a divorced parent is to make sure the kids have something that is only theirs that they can take from home to home. A backpack is a good option for this; kids can keep special things in it to make them feel comfortable and consistent.

Make sure that teachers and school administrators know about your situation, particularly so there is no embarrassment to the children when one parent is not able to attend school events. Do not use school activities as an exchange place; this can cause undue stress on the children. In addition, parents should talk to kids about how they want to explain the situation to their friends and classmates. It may ultimately helpful for the child if both parents attend school events and if both parents can get along.

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