Whilst it may appear that children have only just returned to school after the summer holidays, some parents are already beginning the process of completing school applications for the next academic year.
Deciding what school your child should attend is a big decision and one which should be made jointly between parents. Often this decision can cause tension but there are some practical tips parents can follow to assist with decision-making:
- Attend open evenings for schools in the catchment area so direct comparisons can be made between each school.
- Look at each school’s most recent Ofsted report which can be found on the following website:
- Does the primary school have a ‘feeder’ secondary school?
- Consider the practical arrangements including how your child will travel to school each day and how this will change depending on which parent they are spending time with.
If you are struggling to reach agreement, you may wish to explore the following options:
- Create a parenting plan. CAFCASS (The Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service) have many helpful resources on their website to assist separated parents with making decisions:
- Consider attending mediation. Many couples find speaking to an independent third party helps them to communicate and reach decisions amicably.
- Consider instructing a solicitor to put forward your proposals to the other parent in writing.
- As a last resort, you could consider making an application to court for a Specific Issue Order. However, it is always best if parents can reach agreement without going through the court process, which is often costly and lengthy.