Communication when parents are separated

At the Child Development Network, it is common that we see children whose parents are separated.
The purpose of this policy is to explain how we manage communication in this situation.

Our practice management software identifies a "default" parent for each child. Communication
regarding that child, by default, is addressed to that parent.

This default applies to our automatic communications such as reminder emails (sent to the email
address of the primary parent) and reminder text messages (sent to the mobile phone number of the
primary parent).

Sometimes this inadvertently leads to problem situations where information is sent to the wrong
person. An example would be where a parent who is not the default parent on our information
system makes an appointment, but the reminder information is sent to the default parent.

This default also applies to written communication. It is our practice to routinely copy letters of
communication to parents, such as medical reports back to the referring General Practitioner. We
send a single copy to the parent identified as default.

In general, it is our expectation that separated parents work in a framework of joint parental
responsibility. Legally, this means it is the responsibility of parents to work out how they exchange

We do not have the capacity to make complex individualised arrangements, but we try our best to
accommodate two individual circumstances for the benefit of the child where this is reasonable and

If our communication practice is potentially a problem for you, please discuss this with our
administration staff.

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