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Kid #3 starts high school in about two weeks. I’ve already put in a couple of hours going to the district office to fill out forms for an intradistrict transfer and following up with the school to get her registered. The school doesn’t actually register new students until a few days before classes start, so I didn’t get that paperwork until last week.

And her last name was misspelled. My last name was spelled correctly. We have the same last name. Huh? Since it’s still summer break, my calls went unanswered, even though I called during the hours the outgoing message claimed the school was staffed. I finally sent the registrar an email and she got the name corrected within 10 minutes.

Okay, lesson learned. From this point forward I’m communicating with the school via email whenever possible.

Registration forms are filled out online through a supposedly secure parent portal. (So why’d they send me two packets of papers? Those were the instructions to fill out the online forms, G*d help me.) I’m guessing an enterprising 12 year old could probably hack the system, but for my 52 year old mom purposes, it was secure enough. It took the better part of an hour to fill out the 10 pages of material.

I got really hung up on the family contacts page. According to both the Family Court Services (FCS) mediator and our Marital Settlement Agreement (MSA), I have sole physical custody and we share joint legal custody. But the MSA hasn’t been signed or finalized so I don’t have any documentation to back that up. Is it even appropriate to put Voldemort down as an emergency contact? #3 would rather die from the Black Plague than get in Voldemort’s car to go to the doctor. And since he’s never taken her to the doctor, he wouldn’t know where to go anyway.

I decided I was legally bound to put him in the “parent 2” slot on the form, but only checked the emergency contact box. I’m in the “parent 1” slot with all the boxes (including “has custody”) checked.

Once I did that, a new screen popped up asking for his contact information. Crap. I’m sure his address is on the divorce petition, but is this really my responsibility? The FCS report clearly states that each parent is responsible for contacting the school directly for school calendars, progress reports, report cards, and parent-teacher conferences. Should I give the school his home address or his work address? His cell phone number or his office number?

Any information at all?

I compromised by giving his email address. Once #3 is actually registered (we have to go in and finish the process next week), I’ll ask the school how this mess is usually sorted. Then I’ll email Voldemort and let him know.

The FCS report is crystal clear, but in the settlement meeting eight freaking months ago, Mr. Men’s Rights Attorney gave me a monologue on how I’m supposed to make sure the school has Voldemort’s email address for teacher communications, and on and on. Mr. Men’s Rights’ instructions blatantly contradicted the FCS report with a focus on making things as convenient as possible for Voldemort while placing the burden for getting things done on me.

My divorce feels a lot like my marriage in that way.

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