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Leave to remove London and changing your child’s school

Leave to remove London and changing your child’s school

Here at Gregorian Emerson Family Law Solicitors, we are Guildford’s pre-eminent Leave to remove London lawyers.  We have both personal as well as professional experience in this delicate area and are well versed in any queries or questions you may have.

Many children, not just those of separated or divorced parents, will face moving schools at some point during their education for many reasons, so it is not something to worry unnecessarily about.  It can be successfully navigated with proper care and attention and you can help to make it as stress free as possible for your children.

When parents separate or divorce it can be a natural move for one, or both, to wish to relocate away from the area.  Sometimes it can be to an area nearby, i.e. the next village, but sometimes it can be many miles away, or even to another country.  If there are children involved in the relationship and the primary carer wishes to relocate, then moving the children from one school to another will be inevitable.

If you are relocating mid academic year and not at the start of the main September term then this will bring its own challenges for your child.  They will be joining a year group with friendships already formed and having already gelled together.  Obviously it goes without saying that you will need to be mindful of your child’s concerns over things like this and to be aware that it may take them a few weeks to find their feet within the new school environment.

Relocating can be very traumatic for everyone involved.  You are leaving behind everything familiar and starting afresh in new areas, houses, work places etc. but as adults we are better equipped to deal with the emotions and feelings that we will inevitably go through during a leave to remove case.  If your child was well settled in their old school and had a good set of friends and a good support network, then they can struggle in their new environment whilst they find their place.  You will need to stay calm and be patient with them whilst they are going through this, especially if they were against the move to start with.  This is a situation which is quite age appropriate as younger children tend to settle quicker than older ones.  But as long as you give your child the space and time to talk about any concerns they may have with you, then there is no reason why a child of any age cannot be relocated successfully.  As expert leave to remove London lawyers we can help you navigate your way through the situation.  Our testimonials speak for themselves.

Some of the main fears children have before starting a new school are things like - will they make any friends, how will they know their way around, what are the teachers like etc.  It is important to take every possible chance to visit with your child to the new school and to meet with the teachers prior to their start date.  If the school offers a taster day, (a day where they can join their new classmates for a day or two before starting), this is an excellent way of breaking the ice and making things more familiar for your child.  The school will be used to children starting at all times throughout the academic year and will be well versed in how to handle the situation to make things easier and less stressful for everyone, not just your child.  Some schools nowadays will offer a ‘buddy’ system, where a student is allocated to your child for a specified time when they start, to help them to find their way around and make sure they are not alone during the first few days/weeks etc.  It is worth asking beforehand if this is an option in the schools you are considering for your child, as it can be a useful programme to be involved in and ensure a smooth transition into the new school – something everyone will be keen to promote.  It is also worth pointing out to your children that whilst they may be nervous to start in a new class, the children already there will be excited at the prospect of a ‘newbie’ and there will be lots of fuss surrounding them as the children will want to be their friend – we can all remember the excitement of new children starting when we were in school and this is exactly what will be awaiting your children, so it is worth promoting this as a positive experience for them too.  As experienced leave to remove London lawyers we can help you with any queries you may have.

It is also an important factor for your child as to what sort of relationship they will have with their new teacher and how strict they are.  It can be quite a surprise for some children, upon meeting their new teacher that they are more laid back and/or approachable than the one they are leaving behind.  This can be a welcome surprise, especially for older children, who may find they are ultimately happier in the new school than they thought they would be.  For younger children the relationship with their teacher will primarily be the main concern as they will be with them for the majority of the school day.  All these things will have an impact on how well and how quickly they are able to settle into the new school environment.

If you are relocating and it will be necessary for your child to move schools, then you will need to be both open and honest with your child so they know what is happening as early as possible.  You will need to make them feel involved, in an age appropriate manner, whilst being straightforward with the situation.  You can involve them in the choice of school, if that is an option, so they feel part of the whole process.  You can be positive about the move and emphasise the good points, like maybe they can now walk to school by themselves, or maybe go by bus, they may have an excellent after school programme with activities your child is keen on like drama or sports etc.  Just make sure that you listen and encourage discussion with them over any fears or questions they may have.

If your child was experiencing any particular difficulties in their current school it will be worth enquiring on how the situation would be handled in the new school.  It is also worth making sure the school is aware of any previous problems that were encountered.  It is also worth making sure the school are aware that your child may not just be moving schools, but have been moved, sometimes considerable distance too, as you may find it impacts your child’s behaviour during the settling in period and they can be more understanding if they know the full picture.

It is always worth mentioning all the positives around a relocation move to your child and for them to know, that with today’s social media outlets, they will be able to make new friendships but still maintain their old friendships too.  You can always make arrangements to meet up with their old friends during the holidays, obviously distance permitting.

Although going through a leave to remove case may seem like a mine field and difficult to navigate, we will be there to help you all the way through the process.  With our unique legal and psychological approach we can help you to mediate with your ex-partner and come to a mutually agreeable conclusion, with your child’s interests at the heart of it.

If you are looking for a lawyer to help with a leave to remove based in London then call us today on 01483 826470 where we can talk you through the process.

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