Top 10 Co-parenting Tips as we Begin the New School Year

by | Aug 22, 2014 | Children in Divorce, Parents, Uncategorized | 1 comment

117149003The school year brings on new challenges as flexible summers come to a close and more demanding schedules begin. If you are like most parents of school age children, not only are the kids going back to school, but the activities and sports schedules also start to pile on. Here are our top 10 tips for co-parenting that will save your sanity this school year.
  1. Fine turn your parenting plan NOW. Don’t wait until the middle of September after a few hiccups have ready occurred.
  2. Who’s paying for what? If you haven’t already sat down with your ex to discuss this go grab coffee and decide who is paying for school supplies, clothes, school fees, daycare/afterschool care, sports and activities fees, etc. Map this out now to prevent an argument later.
  3. Revisit and outline who has custody for which holidays this school year. Spring break may seem like a lifetime away right now, but now is the time for those discussions.
  4. It’s inevitable – kids get sick. Make sure you are on the same page with a plan in place on who will stay home or pick up the sick child. Will you rotate, do it based on who has custody that day? You decide what works best, and plan for flexibility, but don’t wait until you are on the phone with the school nurse to decide.
  5. Speaking of sick kids, assuming which parent providing medical insurance is already set, decide who is going to pay the uninsured medical costs, co-pays, etc.
  6. Run-down of your regular weekly schedule, which provides appropriate time for each parent. Does is work better for Mom to pick up Matt after soccer practice and take him to Dad’s even though it’s Dad’s night? Parenting schedules will never be black and white, so plan for some flexibility, while preparing for multiple scenarios.
  7. Transportation. Discuss who is driving to school, activities, drop offs, pick-ups etc. Will you be meeting half way to drop off/pick up or at each other’s houses. Are each other’s spouses/significant others “approved” to do so?
  8. Saving for college. Whether there is no money is the budget to save and the “plan” is to wait 2 years to start, or one or both of you can start now, decide who, how much and where the money is going to: savings account, 529 College Saving account, etc.
  9. Introducing new significant others into the mix. Make sure this is discussed now before feelings are hurt later on when mom unexpectedly meets dad’s new girlfriend at pick-up or find out that the kids meet a new boyfriend without dad knowing.
  10. Communication. Last, and the most important tip is communication. The communication you have with your ex will ultimately reflect the relationship you have with your kids. It may not come easy, but continuing to improve communication is best for all parties.

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