In many areas school will be starting soon and getting the kids ready for school involves more than just shopping for school clothes.
You child’s birth certificate, social security card and immunization records will be needed if your child is starting school for the first time or if you have moved to another school district. It is advisable to locate them and have all gathered together when it is time for school registration.
Most states will not allow your child to attend a single day of school if their immunization records are not up-to-date.
If you have moved from another school district you will need to have the name, address and phone number of the former school to ease the transfer of records. School districts will not allow you to carry your child’s school records. A release of information must be signed by a parent or legal guardian to allow the records to be transferred.
School districts do not all begin and end school sessions at the same time therefore, if you know you are moving contact the records department of the school district and request a release of records for your child before you leave the former school.
For high school students, inquire about the cost of registration fees for lockers, yearbooks, sports or band equipment. Some districts may have payment plans for registration fees. Inquire about rules for students that may drive to school, where to park, or possible parking fees. Inquire about use of cell phones during school hours.
A couple of weeks before school starts encourage your children to be in bed fifteen minutes earlier than they have been doing while on vacation. You may need to increase the time up to thirty minutes, to allow them to reset their sleep patterns and be well rested.
Check the supplies your child brought home at the end of the last school year and determine what needs to be added or replaced. Check over last years back packs to clean them and make repairs.
If your child plans to go out for sports, schedule physicals early to have them ready for beginning tryouts. If you wait until closer to school opening you may have a problem getting an appointment.
Plan ahead for dental check-ups and teeth cleaning. Use the school calendar to make appointments for your child on non-school days or early dismissal days. By scheduling ahead your appointment will already be on the books for the time and day you selected to avoid taking your child out of class early.
Develop a plan to have someone available to collect your child from school in emergencies or for snow days and unscheduled early dismissals. Provide the school registrar with names and phone numbers of persons that are allowed to sign your child out of school if they become ill or for other emergencies.
If your child is attending school for the first time or if you have moved you should walk with them to the school or bus stop. Point out safety issues and re-enforce cautions against talking to or riding with strangers.
With careful planning you and your child can enjoy a less stressful beginning for the first day of school.
Source: Twenty years experience as a school district employee.