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School schedules could affect shared custody in Massachusetts

For some Massachusetts parents, back-to-school time can mean searching for new school supplies and ensuring that their children wake up on time. For divorced parents, the new school year can mean reworking schedules and ensuring that shared custody agreements are still being upheld. This time can be a stressful one for parents, but it can also lead to children feeling strained if their parents lack consistency.

When children must go to two different homes in order to spend time with their parents, a school schedule can sometimes make the situation more confusing, especially if a child rides the bus. If parents are unable to keep a consistent schedule for when a child goes to one house or the other, that child could be confused as to what bus to ride on what day. By keeping up a clear schedule, children and parents may have a less stressful situation.

It is also important for parents to continue to have similar rules that apply to both households. Enforcing the same bedtime in both homes can be especially important when school starts back. If a child is allowed to stay up later at one house than the other, their sleep schedule and productivity at school could potentially be affected. Therefore, parents may need to ensure that they remain on the same page about certain routines.

Shared custody issues do not have to constantly cause arguments, but maintaining workable schedules when transitioning from summer break to school schedules can put a strain on the parties involved. If schedules become a considerable conflict, parents may wish to review their custody agreements to determine how to make their situations work. In some cases, custody modifications may be needed if the changes in circumstances are drastic, and information on custody adjustments in Massachusetts may help shed light on the issue.

Source: The Huffington Post, "5 Back to School Strategies for Divorced or Divorcing Parents", Cheryl and Joe Dillon, Aug. 11, 2014

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