Divorce can be an incredibly trying time for any family. But when you have multiple children attending different schools, things can quickly become overwhelming. It was easier when you and your ex could share the responsibility, but the simple act of getting the kids to school can now become a logistical nightmare. If you're facing this situation, here are a few tips that might help make things a bit easier.
When juggling different kids, destinations, and arrival times, organization is key to keeping things from devolving into chaos. Make a list of all the schools your children attend, their schedules, and any after-school activities they participate in. If possible, get the older kids involved by having them help get the younger ones ready—and stress the importance of being dressed and ready when it's time to go. This will help you keep track of everything and ensure that everyone is where they're supposed to be when they're supposed to be there.
Simplify the Routine as Much as Possible
One of the best ways to make things easier is to have a set routine that everyone can follow—including getting up at the right time, bathroom schedules, lunch preparation, etc. It might help to have a "staging area" in the home where each child puts their backpack, books, lunch, etc., so they always know where to pick things up on their way out the door. Finally, try to plan your route in a way that saves time and gas. The simpler and more consistent your routine is, the easier it will be to get in a flow, and the less stressful the process will be.
Set the Schedule and Stick to It
The routine only works if the schedule is consistent...so once you're organized with a routine in place, keep it on time as much as possible. If you and your ex are co-parenting or sharing driving responsibilities, coordinate your schedules so each of you knows when the other has the kids and can plan accordingly. This will help avoid any confusion or conflict over who is responsible for getting the kids to school on what days. Also, have a contingency plan in place for when the unexpected event throws the schedule off (as will inevitably happen) to avoid panic from setting in.
Make Use of Technology
In today's world, there are a plethora of apps and online tools that can help you keep track of everything—appointments, activities, to-do lists, etc. Utilize these resources to your advantage to help you stay on top of things. You can also use apps or online calendars to coordinate with the other parent so that everyone is on the same page.
Ask for Help When You Need It
There's no shame in admitting that you need help, especially when you're going through a tough time. If you have family or friends who are willing and able to lend a hand with transportation, take them up on their offer. Also, check with the various schools and their PTAs to see if there are any organized carpools you might take advantage of.
Just as a bit of planning and organization can relieve the stress of getting the kids to multiple schools, our legal team can help relieve much of the stress involved with the details of your divorce itself. Call Jerkins Family Law today at (919) 719-2785 for an appointment, or contact us online.