Changing schools AND relocating?

Changing schools and moving can be stressful events, even if the entire family is excited about the move. The purpose of this post is to give you a checklist of the things you may need to think about as you orchestrate your move and what you may need to do when changing schools.

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General tips

  • Research school zones before you look at houses or rental apartments so that you are making an informed decision regarding where your family will live.
  • The best time to move is at the beginning of summer. That gives the children more time to get used to their new home and area and hopefully meet new friends before the first day of school.
  • Follow up with school counselors about a month after school starts to see how the children are adapting to their new schools.
  • Get involved with the new school. Join the PTA; help support an extracurricular activity.

As soon as you decide to move research potential new schools.

  • Location……The difference between a top rated school and a school that lags behind its peers could be as simple as living on one side of the school boundary.
  • Start early – Even public schools may have waiting lists if they are charter or target schools.
  • Found out if there are any extra-curricular activities that require early enrollment or may involve practice over the summer before the school year starts.
  • Enroll your children in their new schools. Make sure you’ve filled out all the required paperwork and have all the necessary doctors’ forms, immunization records, etc. so that the kids can start on day one. Even homeschooling families will need to file paperwork.
  • Get a copy of your children’s current coursework so that the new school can get a better idea of where to place the child in terms of classes or levels.
  • Find day care services or extended day services as soon as possible. Most of these services will have waiting lists, enrollment applications, and down payments necessary to hold spots.

Two months before your move

  • Keep immunization records, medical forms, and birth certificates separate from other papers that you plan to pack for the move. You’ll need these papers to get the children enrolled in their new school. Keep them with your important personal papers rather than risk losing them or misplacing them in the move.
  • Verify that your kids’ immunization records are up to date. It might be easier to make appointments with their current doctors than to find new ones after the move.

One month before your move

  • Schedule a get together so that your children and you can say good bye to your friends. Get mailing addresses, e-mail addresses, and phone numbers.
  • Get maps of the new place where you’re moving to. Show the children the relationship between their new house and school. Highlight any other major landmarks to help the kids get a good feeling for their new place.
  • Get a school supply list from the new school so that you will have those supplies ready rather than having to scramble to get the kids ready for school after you arrive at your new destination.
  • Get a copy of their school guidelines. Your children may be used to different regulations on makeup, acceptable clothes, locker use, PE, etc. By learning as much as you can about their new school, it will really help the children to feel comfortable in their new school. Look into whether the kids will need uniforms (many public schools require uniforms now, too).

Arrive at your new place

  • Drive the kids to their new school before school starts.
  • Consider introducing yourself to the neighbors.
  • Talk to the new school counselors to make sure they know that your kids are experiencing not just a new school but a major house move as well.
  • Look into extracurricular activities (associated with and without the school) to give the kids opportunities to meet new friends.

If you are relocating to Tennessee I would be happy to show you around, introduce you to the community, assist with property searching and educate you on our fantastic school system.

Tennessee’s Education Mission:

Districts and schools in Tennessee will exemplify excellence and equity such that all students are equipped with the knowledge and skills to successfully embark upon their chosen path in life.


Tennessee’s Community Realtor,

Lynn Kronk



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