Divorced parents in California often debate and end-up in court to have the judge decide where their child will go to school; will it be a public school or private one or, will the child be homeschooled.
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California courts generally do not become over involved in decisions regarding educational choices when making child custody orders. However, a California Family Law Court judge has the discretion to determine whether a particular school or even homeschooling is appropriate for the child.
Your educational choice should fist consider they type of school your child will be attending.
- Neighborhood Public Schools: Many parents choose to send their children to the public school in their neighborhood, according to an assignment system developed by the school district. Attending a neighborhood public school can make it easy for your child to get to school, to work with classmates on group projects, and to visit friends. These schools are often anchors in a community.
- Other Public Schools: You may want to investigate other public schools. In an increasing number of districts, you can choose to send your child to a specialized public school. These schools of choice often emphasize a particular subject or have a special philosophy of education. One school might emphasize science, art, or language study. Another might offer a firm code of conduct, a dress code, or a rigorous traditional academic program.
- Another may be an alternative school designed to respond to students who are insufficiently challenged by the regular school program, who are likely to drop out, or who have behavioral or substance abuse problems. These schools, often small, work to make students feel they belong. Some states also offer second chance schools or clinics for students who have dropped out of regular schools and now want to complete their education.
- Charter Schools: Charter schools are public schools of choice that operate with freedom from many of the local and state regulations that apply to traditional public schools. Charter schools allow parents, community leaders, educational entrepreneurs, and others the flexibility to innovate, create and provide students with increased educational options. Charter schools exercise increased autonomy in return for stronger accountability. They are sponsored by designated local, state, or other organizations that monitor their quality and integrity while holding them accountable for academic results and fiscal practices.
- Magnet Schools: Magnet schools are designed to attract students from diverse social, economic, ethnic, and racial backgrounds by focusing on a specific subject, such as science, technology, or the arts. Some magnet schools require students to take an exam or demonstrate knowledge or skill in the specialty to qualify to go to the school, while others are open to students who express an interest in that area.
Child’s Best Interests
Which school is best for my child?
And like all issues before the court, the judge when making a decision regarding educational choices in a child custody case, they will look first and foremost at the child’s best interest. If a child has had stability with a particular school or a particular type of schooling, and the child appears to be doing well, the court will generally not upset the status quo. However, if the child is not doing well in school and a change in custody is requested, the family law courts are given the latitude to make such orders that are consistent with the child’s best interest.
In order to persuade the Judge to make an order changing the current practice, you will need an experienced family law attorney to assist you in representing your case. A licensed attorney will be able to assist you in preparing documents and evidence that will help you present your case to the Court.
Factors Affecting Educational Choices
How will we decide on where the child goes to school?
Where a child attends school is a serious matter of consideration. Many factors go into shaping your child’s future when it comes to their education. If you are seeking to change the current practice, call now to schedule an appointment with a licensed attorney, qualified to practice law in the State of California.
A skilled attorney can advise you on how to best handle your legal matter. Educational decisions involving your child can be a complicated matter. It’s best to get the opinion of a licensed attorney so that you can make an informed decision.
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For more information about child custody, click on one of the following links:
California Joint Legal Child Custody
Child Custody Modification Order
The Law Offices of Edward Misleh, APC