School is back in session. The start of a new school year means the start of writerís cramp for mom and or dad. Parents will have a variety of forms to fill out and return to their childís teacher. This information is especially important to have on file when children leave the school campus for field trips and in the event of an emergency. As important as who can pick-up your child is who cannot pick-up your child, make sure this information is clear on the forms you turn in for your child.
In this pile of forms, you will find a standard medical form with questions regarding a childís current and past medical history. Is the child taking any daily medications at home or at school? Are there any allergies to food, medications, or other substances? If there are allergies, what reaction does the child have to the allergen? Finally, it asks for the pediatricianís name, address, and contact information.
In addition to current medical information, there is the emergency contact form. In the event your child is injured or sick at school and needs to be picked up who should the school contact. Since most families have a cell that is probably the best number to put down. This way someone is always available even when no one is at home by the phone. Then list the home phone and work phone numbers. In cases of blended families the parentís and stepparentís home, work and cell phones should be included, usually in the order of who is the closest to pick up the child or easiest to reach.
Besides family members, if possible place a few trusted neighbors or family friends on the list. This way there is someone to pick up your child even if there is a family emergency. Always make children aware of who is on there emergency contact list and who has permission to pick them up in an emergency and decide how you will notify them that there has been a change in plans. A family code word is a good idea. The code word is a word that you and your children will decide on in advance. If there is, an emergency then the code word is used. Then mom tells the pick up person the code word and the child will know that the pick up is legitimate.
Just as important as who can pick up your child is the question of who cannot have access to your child. Currently parents are willing to take a child and disappear for a while. Kids deserve to live with both parents whenever possible. Parents need to work out their feelings of ill will on their own and leave children out of the middle. Remember to add anyone who has made a threat in the past or anyone who has been abusive or made you or your child feel uncomfortable.
Finally, the more information on the forms the better the school can work to protect our children. In the end, it is all about keeping our children safe. In the event that someone attempts to take our child out of school, the school should notify us immediately. Make sure you have a current picture of each child and up-to-date information regarding scars, birthmarks and any other identifying marks. That way our children will remain safe and in the event our child does go missing, they can help us get the information to the police for any amber alerts or missing children posters.
Until next time, angels above, below and all around each of you~