The start of the school year in Ohio always is filled with challenges as kids get back on schedule and prepare for the year ahead, but if you're newly divorced, your kids will have a few extra adjustments to make. Figuring out how to maneuver while living in two households instead of one is tough -- as is setting a schedule for the kids with your ex-spouse. Here's a peek at what you should do and what you can expect as a newly single parent:
Ask your kids what their goals are and work with your former partner to make it happen. It is best for children and parents to be on the same page. Be supportive of your child. If your daughter wants to be on the debate team, for example, figure out how to work together to make it happen by deciding who will drive her to tournaments or pick her up from debate preparation.
Every school year brings expenses that probably weren't included in your divorce agreement. Who will pay for the dress for the homecoming dance? Who will pay extra child care costs when the kids have the day off from school but you both still must go to work? And how about the cost of the field trip? Older kids can contribute to some of the non-mandatory costs, such as buying or chipping in toward the high school yearbook, but parents should know that costs will come up. Have a discussion ahead of time about how you will handle such expenses so your child isn't stuck in the middle.
With school in session, there is a lot to juggle. There are after-school events, high school football games and early dismissals you must plan for. Keep an online family calendar so that both parents, grandparents and the babysitter – all the people who need to know the schedule – have easy access to it.
Divorce is tough for everyone – especially the children. Both parents must do their part to make the school year the best it can be for the kids. That includes sticking to the custody and visitation schedule or making changes as soon as conflicts arise. If your ex-spouse is not cooperating with the schedule, an Ohio attorney can help.