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Planning Custody Schedules During the School Year

Whether your children are in school, distance learning from home, or participating in some combination of multiple scenarios this year, school is still in session, it’s imperative for families to be abiding by their court-ordered parenting plan as you create and execute family schedules during the school year.

When developing parenting plans for parents of school-aged children, there are several factors to consider, including both parents’ work schedules as well as the child(ren)’s age, school work, and extra-curricular activities. Whether or not both parents live relatively close to each other may also impact the schedule.

Sample parenting schedules to make for a successful school year

Children of parents who effectively co-parent after divorce tend to have better mental health and self-esteem outcomes, which also extends to better outcomes in school. Having supportive parents – whether they are living together or not – is so important for a child’s health and success.

The courts will consider the best interests of the child when developing a parenting plan for the school year, and examples of that plan may include the following:

  • Alternating weeks – the kids are with one parent for one week and the other for the following week.
  • Alternating weeks with a midweek visit – one night per week, the kids visit the other parent for an evening visit so they never go a full week without seeing the other parent in person.
  • Alternating weeks with a midweek overnight visit – the same schedule as above but with a full overnight, rather than just an evening visit.
  • A 2-2-3 rotation – this rotation schedule has the kids staying with one parent for two days, the other parent for two days, and then back to the first parent for a three-day long weekend. The following week the schedule flips so the other parent will have the kids for the long weekend.
  • Other rotational combinations – there are other rotational patterns that may work for families, such as 3-3-4-4 or 2-2-5-5.

With any parenting plan schedule, it will take time to adjust, but by working together and keeping communication lines open, there will be better chance of success for everyone.

What do I do if I need to modify my parenting plan?

At the Vasquez de Lara Law Group, we understand that schedules can change, and it can feel like modifications to the court-ordered plan need to be made, but it’s important to keep in mind that schedule modifications can be very difficult to obtain in court and the process can be lengthy.

Unless there has been a substantial change in circumstances, the courts will likely not grant the modification. A substantial change may include something like if one spouse used to work nights and now they work days, for example.

While modifications to parenting plans can be difficult to obtain, it’s not impossible. Contact us today at Vasquez de Lara Law Group for answers to your questions about family law.