Few things in life can be as hectic as moving from one home to another. One thing that comes to mind is completing that move in the middle of a school year. There’s a reason that the Real Estate community considers late spring their prime time, as most people try to facilitate a move while the kids are home from school, but as is common in life, timing isn’t always perfect.
Statistically, midyear moves are necessitated by a parent’s change in employment. Some are moving to find work, others moving at the need or request of a current employer. While this is a stressful time for the adults, it can also be just as stressful for the kids. Social circles, sports teams, and other pillars of a kid’s life will be changing, so It’s critical that you take the right steps to make it easy on everyone.
Many people underestimate their children’s ability to understand a situation. While toddler aged children may not be too affected by a move, older kids will be. Be up front with them, explain why the family must move. Give them the details of the new town so they can research it themselves. Allow them time to be upset and try to address their concerns. Studies have shown kids respond very well to being treated as a full member of the family instead of as a subordinate.
Set up a Last Get Together
Take a weekend afternoon to have a small get together for your friends and your children’s friends. Having the closure of saying goodbye can lessen the feeling of being ripped away from their current lives and your own.
The New School
Contact the local board of education in your new town and find out what school your children will be attending. If you’re opting for private school, research ones that are nearby and reach out to them. Nearly all schools have policies and procedures in place for midyear enrollment and you’ll need to know what documents are needed well ahead of time.
The Old School
Visit your children’s current school and inform them of the move. Some schools may allow the kids to work ahead to complete important tests or projects before the move. They’ll also be able to provide you with transcripts, health and attendance records, and letters of recommendation if necessary. In some cases, coaches and instructors may be able to reach out the new school and get your child placed on a sports team or extracurricular activity.
Devil in the Details
If your child rides the bus, make sure the new school adds your address to the route, find out the bus number, and what time it typically comes. Save the schools phone number and address as well as the start and dismissal times as they vary from county to county. Make sure you’re aware of any dress and appearance codes and try to establish a start date that falls at the beginning of a week. If the school will accommodate it, set up a tour of the school prior to the start date so your child doesn’t feel so lost on their first day.
Moving is a major life event and having to take that on in the middle of a school year can seem like an unmanageable task. Take your time, make a plan, discuss it with your family and be methodical. By using our guide as a reference, you can rest assured that your next move will go off without a hitch.