Back to school FAQs for separating parents

24 August, 2015
by: Cripps Pemberton Greenish

The new school term is right around the corner and the solicitors in the Family Team at Cripps Pemberton Greenish are often asked by their clients questions about contact arrangements and schooling. We thought it would be helpful to address some common concerns of separated parents at this time. Each day this week we will be posting answers to a different FAQ.

Here’s today’s question:

What happens to contact arrangements when children go back to school?

Sometimes the children’s arrangements you agreed previously with your ex-partner for the last school term are appropriate and therefore can continue. However, you may need to review it and agree a new arrangement for the new school year. The children may enrol in new extra-curricular activities or have after school activities on different days than the previous school year, or they may be old enough to get the school bus on their own to and from school. Each parent is entitled to spend quality time with their children so to ensure this it may mean tweaking your arrangement to fit around your child’s new schedule, or both parents becoming involved in the drop offs and pick-ups for such activities.

Co-parenting often requires some flexibility from both parents. Children (especially younger children) need continuity and consistency and like to know when they are spending time with each parent. You may need to review the arrangements again as the school year progresses.

If you are not able to agree the arrangements or you feel that one parent is being unnecessarily restrictive about contact it is advisable to firstly try and resolve it in mediation and as a last resort to apply to the court for a child arrangements order.