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Divorce and a child’s education: A complicated relationship

There are many concerns parents may have about their children’s future when getting divorced. For one, parents may worry that the disruptions caused by a divorce could pose roadblocks to their goals for their children’s education.

As a recent study indicates, the relationship between divorce and a child’s education is a complex one. This research points to many factors playing a role in how likely a divorce is to have major impacts on this aspect of a child’s future.

The study analyzed national data on thousands of children and mothers. It looked at how the education futures of children with divorced and non-divorced parents varied among different socioeconomic and demographic groups.

The study found that children from families in which factors were present that were associated with lower divorce likelihood, like more advantaged socioeconomic status, did see a noticeable drop in the likelihood of graduating from high school and completing college if their parents ended up divorcing. Meanwhile, children from families with factors linked with higher divorce likelihood did not see not such a drop after a divorce.

This suggests that there are many things that could be connected with increased risk of education disruption for a child after a divorce. This includes coming from a more affluent family.

What do you think of the findings of this research?

It is impossible for a parent to know exactly what impacts a divorce would have on their child, including educational impacts. However, there are various steps parents can take to protect their child’s education future when getting divorced, including:

  • Helping the transition from the divorce to go as smoothly as possible for their child
  • Making sure issues touching on their child’s educational well-being are properly addressed in the child custody arrangement
  • Factoring in their goals for saving for college for their child when deciding how to proceed in important financial matters in the divorce, such as property division

Skilled family law attorneys can help parents with developing and executing strategies for safeguarding their goals, such as those regarding their children’s education, in a divorce.

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