Provide a Custody Order to Your School

It is a parent’s responsibility to ensure your child’s school has a copy of your custody order. School administrators need to know what to do if a parent shows up to your child’s school post-divorce. A custody order will establish which parent has the exclusive right to determine where the child will live and will outline each parent’s ability to make decisions regarding their child’s education. If the school does not have a copy of your custody order, then the school administrators will follow the federal and state laws.

For instance, the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), establishes a parents' right to access their child’s education records. This means a parent has automatic access to their child’s enrollment application, report cards, progress reports, etc. This will cause safety issues if your court order has found abuse or domestic violence and has ruled that one parent shall not have access to the other parent’s personal information, like that parent’s address. A custody order will also inform school officials who has the right to pick up the child from school or who has the ability to switch the child to a different school.

In Texas, family law courts will likely order both parents to share custody. In this case, each parent has the right to consult with school officials, equal rights to attend school activities and to be designated as an emergency contact at all times. However, custody orders will vary on how education decisions are made. One parent may have the exclusive right to make decisions concerning the child’s education. Others must reach an agreement before a decision is made.

Future disagreements could include whether the child will attend public or private school, what school district the child will attend or what electives the child should take. Deciding what extracurricular activities, the child should prioritize and who will pay for those costs is also a hot topic. Both parents should collaborate to make a decision in their child’s best interest. Let’s say one parent is uncooperative in making decisions, what happens if you cannot reach an agreement? To avoid future deadlocks, you can specifically address those situations in your order. You can list a school counselor or teacher as a tie breaker so that a decision is made. If all else fails, you may have no choice but to go back to court for a modification.

If a court order has been provided to the school and one parent or the school disobeys the custody order, there can be legal consequences. As your child grows, understand that arrangements will need to grow with them. Contact UsFor more help regarding child custody arrangements,contact Sanchez and Flores at (512) 212-7851.

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