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  1. #1
    withonel is offline Member
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    School Attendance and Custody

    What is the name of your state? California

    Ex and I have joint physical/legal custody of our 10 yr old son. He is with me on Mon and Tues, with Dad on Wed and Thurs, and we alternate weekends (Fri, Sat and Sun). When at dad's for the weekend he often doesn't go to school on Mon, or stays out of school on Fridays, he is also often late when he does go to school. Dad says he's sick, but son says 'they woke up late' or Dad wasn't going to work so they stayed home. Recently Dad left for a 3 wk trip out of the country, the day before he left he kept son home from school, Dad returns this week, I'm sure he'll keep him out of school upon his return because he's been gone so long.
    Is keeping a 10 yr old home from school illegal? Is there anything I can do about it? Dad is in the Phillipines marrying an on-line girlfriend, I suspect he will attempt to gain full custody upon his return, can son's attendance record be used to show the need for joint custody if only to keep him in school on a more regular basis?
  2. #2
    Boxcarbill Guest
    I don't know why divorcing parents go through the exercise of joint custody. A Joint custody agreement produces about the same percentile of successes as lottery winners in the lottery. Even the few which start off working, upon the remarriage of one or both parties frequently collapse. People ought to be realistic and not bother with joint custody unless both parties have a long history of being capable of compromise. Usually the marriage reflects an inability for the parties to compromise and/or negotiate settlement of disputes. Parties fight like cats and dogs; lie awake at night plotting retaliation against the other spouse for some real or imagined wrong and then they come up at the time of divorce with "we have worked a joint custody agreement!"

    Yes, it is illegal for a parent to repeatedly keep a 10 year old out of school without a good reason. But then you knew that.
  3. #3
    stealth2 is offline Senior Member
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    What I have been told - by both our elementary and middle schools - is that while there is a policy regarding (the number of unexcused) absences, if the child's grades aren't suffering it is not considered a problem. A note may be sent home at intervals, but as long as the kid's doing well noone's going to make a fuss. When it comes to high school, however, the number of days missed can and will affect the child's progression to the next grade.

    The reason this was an issue for us is that the ex (NCP) causes the kids to miss either a half or a full day each month for visitation (depending on the time he books their flights for). He also petitioned the court to allow him to take the kids out of school for two vacations - totalling 8 days. That's on top of sick days that come up through the year (they average 2-3). As the CP, I'm responsible for making sure they're in school, yet these are situations I have no control over.
  4. #4
    karma1 is offline Senior Member
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    BCB....

    Originally posted by Boxcarbill
    I don't know why divorcing parents go through the exercise of joint custody. A Joint custody agreement produces about the same percentile of successes as lottery winners in the lottery. Even the few which start off working, upon the remarriage of one or both parties frequently collapse. People ought to be realistic and not bother with joint custody unless both parties have a long history of being capable of compromise. Usually the marriage reflects an inability for the parties to compromise and/or negotiate settlement of disputes. Parties fight like cats and dogs; lie awake at night plotting retaliation against the other spouse for some real or imagined wrong and then they come up at the time of divorce with "we have worked a joint custody agreement!"

    Yes, it is illegal for a parent to repeatedly keep a 10 year old out of school without a good reason. But then you knew that.
    Dont you find the same thing happening ie, the fighting and arguing when there is sole custody awarded and even if parenting time is spelled out?
    Reason for this board, I assume....
  5. #5
    PoohBear8 Guest
    when my hubby was given wednesday overnights with his children, the judge told him that if the children did not go to school, were late, or their grades went down, the overnight visit would be taken away. i am proud to say, that, to date, they have never been late to school (even when i had to drive in inclement weather, and had to do deal with traffic jams and/or accidents). the only time they have been absent is when they were truly sick and their mom was contacted---since we have to take them to her house, to spend the day alone, even though i am home all day and am more than happy to take care of them when ill---control freak. sorry to get off the subject.
    what are the school's limitations about how many days a student can miss (without medical excuses) before they are failed for the year. some schools are thirty days, but many are much less. you may want to check in to this. if the absences continue, you could petition for a modification. best of luck...
  6. #6
    Boxcarbill Guest

    Re: BCB....

    Originally posted by lovingwife
    Dont you find the same thing happening ie, the fighting and arguing when there is sole custody awarded and even if parenting time is spelled out?
    Reason for this board, I assume....
    Of course they are going to argue regardless but the difference is with sole custody, the parent who has sole custody makes the legal decisions regarding the child. With joint legal custody, the parties are suppose to be making joint legal decision together for their child. Big legal difference.
  7. #7
    withonel is offline Member
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    I am contacting the school today to get an exact count of absences and to get their opinion on how it's affecting his progress.
    Boxcar, regardless of how I feel about his father, our son loves him and wants to be with him, this is why we have joint custody, so he can maintain a relationship with both of us, even if we have found that we can't maintain a relationship with each other. Yes, if we could get along we'd still be married, but we have to make the best of what we've got now.
    However, after years of deference to Dad's wishes, I do feel the need to stand up when our son's best interests are being threatened. I've been blind sided by my ex before and now wish to be well armed in the event he tries to keep me from our son again. This is why I asked what I can do about him keeping our son out of school...I don't want to keep fighting with him but I do want our son to understand the importance of regular attendance. Since I can't reason with his father, I'd like to know if there is a way the law can step in to assist.
  8. #8
    bugaboo is offline Member
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    Re: Re: BCB....

    Originally posted by Boxcarbill
    Of course they are going to argue regardless but the difference is with sole custody, the parent who has sole custody makes the legal decisions regarding the child. With joint legal custody, the parties are suppose to be making joint legal decision together for their child. Big legal difference.
    Of course, when one parent has "custody" and the other parent just has visitation, there's the control issue. NO ONE PARENT should have FULL say over the children...IT TOOK BOTH PARENTS TO BRING THE CHILD INTO THE WORLD. All that ends up happening is one parent being left out, the child loosing a parent and it's the children that end up being hurt in the long run...Courts should do away with "full custody" when there is another parent that WANTS to be in their childs life.
  9. #9
    Boxcarbill Guest

    Re: Re: Re: BCB....

    Originally posted by bugaboo
    Of course, when one parent has "custody" and the other parent just has visitation, there's the control issue. NO ONE PARENT should have FULL say over the children...IT TOOK BOTH PARENTS TO BRING THE CHILD INTO THE WORLD. All that ends up happening is one parent being left out, the child loosing a parent and it's the children that end up being hurt in the long run...Courts should do away with "full custody" when there is another parent that WANTS to be in their childs life.
    There is the control issue regardless as Lovingwife pointed out but it the control issue is lessened significantly when both parties either can demonstrate that (1) they are capable of co-operating with each other in decision making--ie. placing their child's best interest before their personal interests of control or (2) when only one parent has the right to control legal decisions. Then the number of control issues is significantly diminished and the child's best interest is promoted in spite of the parent's need to create a logger jam over legal issues. The courts know, recognize and apply these principles in making the decision to grant joint legal custody or sole legal custody. Now if the parties agree to it, then the court will approve until a legal loggerhead forces the court decide a legal issues because the parents will not.

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