As you send your children back to school, it is vital for teacher’s to know if you have a divorce pending. Your children’s teachers have a huge role in their day-to-day well being. If you think about it, they spend nearly as much time each day with them as you do. As professionals, teachers are attuned to changes in performance, attitude, self-assurance and behavior patterns of their students. Their role is to guide your child’s education so that they are performing up to their potential. When they see changes in normal behaviors, it sends a red flag that something is amiss. By alerting them to the possible ramifications, a divorce can have on your child it allows them to be proactive in giving them the support they will need.
How much information does your child’s teacher need? The more information that you can share about the circumstances surrounding your child’s life the better. Don’t forget, teachers deal with student’s whose parents are divorcing, or have divorced, every day. It is nothing new and they are not judging you for your decisions.
Here are some examples of information that teachers should know as soon as possible. Whether their father has left the marital home is important. It means that their schedule has changed. Are they spending time with dad during the week which means they are traveling between two homes? (Homework, books and computers may not be at both locations, especially right after dad moves so they may not be getting their work done and turned in on time.) Who should their teacher call when problems arise? If dad shows up at school and wants to take their child out of class, is it ok? Is there shared legal custody? Who is the custodial parent? Has your child been exhibiting signs of stress or insecurity? Is your child in counseling to help deal with the transition to a new normal?
Using your children’s teachers as resources and allies during your divorce will add to you and your children’s support system. It will also give you peace of mind that someone else is looking out for their best interests and helping them adjust while they are in school.
Nothing herein constitutes legal advice
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