If you are separated from your child’s other parent and do not reside in the same school district, you need to have a discussion as to which school your child will attend. Selecting a school district is an example of an education decision that should be discussed in the context of shared legal custody. Custody orders address both physical custody, which is the schedule parties follow, as well as legal custody, which is who makes important decisions for the child(ren). If the parties ultimately cannot agree on a school district, the court could intervene to make the final determination. Other decisions parents should consult with one another on include healthcare and religion.
The potential for a different school district may also arise in the context of a custody relocation. Pennsylvania’s custody relocation statute, 23 PA C.S. 5337, requires the party seeking relocation to get court approval or the other parent’s permission prior to relocation. A relocation is defined as any move that would “significantly impair the ability of the non-relocating party to exercise custodial rights.” Prior to the relocation, the party seeking to move must give notice via certified mail to the other parent and said notice should include the proposed new school district.