It's the time of year when you'll see all sorts of back-to-school sales at almost any department store. Soon enough, students will be starting a new school year.
For parents who are divorced or separated, this can mean big shifts to your regular routines. It's this change in your schedule that can create additional conflict among co-parents.
Conflict isn't good for anyone in a co-parenting relationship. That's why it's important to plan ahead for the upcoming school year to help ensure you and your ex are on the same page.
Create a plan
Navigating the school year carries a lot of additional responsibilities for both parents and students alike. That's why it's so important to create a plan that provides some structure around these responsibilities.
Each family's plan may look a little bit different, but there should be some common elements. You should have information about homework expectations for your child. Outline which parent is dropping off and picking up your child on which days of the week. If your child is engaged in extracurricular activities before or after school, make sure that's incorporated into your plan, too.
It's been found that the more a parent is involved with their child's academic life, the better the student's performance is in school. Ask your child about the projects they're working on, and be willing to help them regularly with homework.
It's also good to attend parent-teacher conferences. This can help foster strong relationships with your child's teachers.
The key to a successful co-parenting relationship is frequent communication. Don't use your child as a messenger. Speak directly with your ex about any school-related issues that may have materialized.
Having an open dialogue not only can help increase the harmony in your relationship with your ex. It can also offer a couple of significant benefits to your child. First, seeing the two of you communicating regularly can help your child better cope with the reality of a divorce or separation.
Second, a regular dialogue helps eliminate unexpected surprises from popping into your child's life. This consistency in their home life can help lead to better performance in their school life.
Back to school is a hectic time of year for all parents. Taking these three actions can help create an atmosphere that positions your child to succeed academically during the upcoming school year.