10 Tips on Staying Involved in Your Child’s Schooling
One of the most important ways a father can stay involved in their children’s lives after a divorce is by playing an active role in their schooling. Being involved at school does require extra effort and scheduling, but showing an interest in your child’s activities will inevitably strengthen your relationship and gain the respect of your child’s teachers. We’ve compiled 10 tips on how fathers can jumpstart their involvement at school. We encourage you to follow one of these tips or find your own way to help out at school and start connecting with your child.
- Get to know your child’s teacher or daycare supervisor as soon as possible.
- Don’t wait for parent/teacher conferences to come around. Take the initiative to set up your own appointment or visit, even if it is only to introduce yourself.
- Don’t be afraid to explain to teachers that you are going through a separation or divorce. Just make sure to emphasize you still want to participate in school activities with your child.
- Focus on your child when communicating with teachers. They do not want to be choosing sides in arguments between you and the mother, but will be willing to offer advice on what is best for your child at school.
- Ask for a separate parent/teacher conference if you are unable to attend the same one as the mother. This shows that you are trying to be actively involved in your child’s schooling even if you can’t coordinate with the mother.
- Be respectful of the mother when around school professionals. This way, complaints the mother makes in your absence will not be viewed as an accurate representation of your character.
- Offer to chaperone a school function or field trip to support your child’s teacher.
- Come to open house and father-son/father-daughter events to show interest in activities your child cares about.
- Follow up with teachers if you have any questions about your child’s assignments, projects, or other school activities. This will show teachers you regularly monitor your child’s progress and involvement at school.
- Remember, if teachers are called to the courtroom, they will be able to testify that you are heavily involved in the child’s life and are supportive if you stay active at school.