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Planning for a new school year after divorce

When parents legally split in Texas, each party still shares important responsibilities when it comes to caring for their children. This includes making the transition to splitting time between two households during the first school year following a divorce as seamless as possible. If efforts are made to put together a solid game plan for everyone involved before school starts, the post-divorce adjustment process can be a time to clearly establish expectations, goals and boundaries.

Once child custody matters have been settled, it can be helpful for parents and kids to discuss their goals and expectations regarding academics, athletics and extra-curricular activities. If tensions are still lingering between parents, children may be able to have such a discussion separately with each parent to get everyone on the same page.

It can be equally beneficial for parents to make decisions about extra school-related expenses for things like school trips, dances and sports. Some parents agree to do an even split while others prefer to divvy things up based on income. If children are older, it may be appropriate to discuss how much they will be able or expected to contribute.

Giving everyone access to the school calendar via a website or app may reduce misunderstandings and increase awareness of changes with important dates for days off or vacations. In regard to homework, it may be easier for couples with different parenting styles to establish consistent expectations.

If there are disagreements over parental rights or possible violations of visitation arrangements, an attorney may first make an attempt to work out issues without court intervention. Should this not be possible, a lawyer may recommend seeking appropriate modifications with custody arrangements in a way that's not too disruptive for the child, especially if issues arise after a school year has already started.

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