VIC Parenting orders say half of school holidays - mother saying that doesn't apply in CV circumstances

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Atticus

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6 February 2019
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The key wording by the Vic premier was 'bringing school holidays forward' and given the wording in the orders it's very clear.
I suppose then the next bun fight is going to be over what constitutes 'half of school holidays' under current bio measures, & if schools are closed for months how you would interpret the beginning & end of school holidays..... That is why I think (in the absence of any agreement to do otherwise) you should go by the gazetted dates for school terms....

Also just to chuck in another curly.... if Vic goes into lock down (very likely) the idea is that whoever is in that household at the time, REMAINS within that exclusive 'bubble', I imagine for at least 14 days... Interesting times
 

miguel

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30 May 2018
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I suppose then the next bun fight is going to be over what constitutes 'half of school holidays' under current bio measures, & if schools are closed for months how you would interpret the beginning & end of school holidays..... That is why I think (in the absence of any agreement to do otherwise) you should go by the gazetted dates for school terms....

Also just to chuck in another curly.... if Vic goes into lock down (very likely) the idea is that whoever is in that household at the time, REMAINS within that exclusive 'bubble', I imagine for at least 14 days... Interesting times
Agree. I wrote to her asking for her thoughts on what half is now, still haven't heard back. The orders say second Saturday but that would exceed half. I'm happy to do half of the original 2 weeks + the 4 extra days. She's having fits.

RE: lock down. That's a s**t term. Essentials like petrol stations and supermarkets will still be open. This gives latitude to change over, as long as it's done carefully I reckon. I've written to her about that to, asking for us to develop a protocol that conforms with guidelines and keeps the kids safe too (making sure they are save from car traffic).
 

miguel

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30 May 2018
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Hi Sammy,

Yes Final orders. I wouldn't have done it with interim.

The key wording by the Vic premier was 'bringing school holidays forward' and given the wording in the orders it's very clear.

She's gone a bit troppo, just stuff to use if need be :) I'd rather have an amicable relationship with her but she's only capable of that if she feels in control. Which I don't mind except when it comes to time. I'll fight every time for that and I think it's worth me showing it.

Mig.
Hi GlassHalfFull

The best advice I got from sammy is to avoid high conflict. It is without doubt the best advice.

Because each contention will cost 10k in lawyers to sort out. Contention will extend the court time by years. Worst, it puts the judge into a position where he/she may have to determine no contact with one parent is in the best interests of the kid.

Mig.
 

GlassHalfFull

Well-Known Member
28 August 2018
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It's hard to know what the threshold is for determining that the conflict is so high that the child(ren) need to live exclusively with one parent and not have contact with the other though. I would have thought it would have to be pretty extreme, along with a few warning shots across the bow that something needs to change 'or else'.

Like right now, my ex refuses to participate in handovers (has a family friend do it), communicates with me via text only on days I have the children (usually complete radio silence at any other time) and gives me extremely limited handover updates, but ignores most of my questions about the children and their lives, occasionally answers the ones she chooses to, says she will 'in due course' respond to other questions but nearly always fails to, and when I try to chase an answer, she accuses me of harassing her. She follows the court orders as far as communication about health and medical issues goes so I can't actually claim she's breaching anything, but she clearly wants to assume total control over everything and gives me mere lip service about 'making joint decisions' because as primary carer, she essentially gets to make the calls without my involvement anyway. She regularly tries to micromanage what I do with the children while they are with me and criticises my day to day decisions, like the latest one is that she insists I put floaties on the children when they are at the pool (a non issue currently with pool closures), despite there being ample supervision at arms lengths, and she implies I'm irresponsible and putting them at risk by not using floaties, despite the fact that most 'learn to swim' programs don't recommend floaties as they give a false sense of security to children and keep them too upright etc. This obviously frustrates me to no end and while I try to remain calm and collected, I occasionally express my frustration about her attitude, but of course it rarely improves the situation!

It's all well and good to try to avoid conflict when you have relatively equal parenting responsibility and you aren't being undermined by the other parent. I guess I naively want to be an involved parent that actually communicates with the ex for the best interests of the children, and she sees it as an inconvenience.

Still, I can only assume that a judge wouldn't see that kind of relatively low level conflict as a reason to remove one parent from the children's lives.
 

sammy01

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27 September 2015
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Glass halffull - high conflict doesn't mean judge decides to exclude one parent entirely... IT can mean reducing time with one parent because the conflict is evidence they can't co-parent so shared care isn't in the best interest of the kids. Lots of cases where one parent gets sole parental responsibility but the other parent gets access to the kids and in situations like that the other parent isn't getting 50/50 access...

It suxs - The system isn't perfect... But it is the people that make it that way. See in your situation and any with interim orders. The primary carer will do well to cause conflict (and in all likelyhood enjoy doing it). Meanwhile the non-primary carer needs to harness their inner Zen Budda, learn from Mahatma Gandi and do 5 hours of yoga a day to stay calm if they wanna have a good go in court.

Dilema - NSW - Our schools are not closing... We're open for business... 10 kids at my school yesterday. In Victoria they are bringing the holidays forward. But are they extending them? If so by how much?

But if it is just school closures then NOT holidays that means Miguel's ex would be right (in nsw at least where the schools are not closed).... Worse - What f the orders say pick up at school, but the kid isn't at school?

Now - In some respects I'm Miguel's ex... The kids are meant to go visit their mum from Good Friday for a week (U'm actually two weeks because in November last year I offered her and additional week so I could go to Bali GGRRR).

I'm thinking of cancelling. Not Bali - That has already happened... See my ex lives 8 hours away. IF I hand over the kids, she goes to back to her home town (9 hours away) then we go into lockdown. She could have the kids for months. BTW my ex is opposed to vaccinations, sunscreen, believes in homeschooling and thinks 911 was a hollywood film, not a terrorist attack. BUT she will be onto centrelink / csa straight away and when lockdown ends is likely to claim the kids live with her now because that is the new status quo..

She will give them a Steiner education - Don't get me wrong I like Steiner but her version is the kids can do what they want when they want and eventually they'll choose learning over the x box... (THEY WONT) and if they did choose learning, when my ex starts teaching, the kids will learn the earth is flat in geography. In history they'll learn that all history hitherto is the history of gender struggle where the oppressor (men) and the oppressed (womyn) are in constant opposition. In English, she'll have my 10 year old reading The Handmaids Tale. She will integrate home ec and science to teach them how to make hash cookies. She won't teach math because she can't count or tell the time (hence me waiting at Macca's for hours when she is meant to drop them off)

Oops - sorry, it's not all about me...But I needed that rant. I wanna go to Bali.
 
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Atticus

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See my ex lives 8 hours away. IF I hand over the kids, she goes to back to her home town (9 hours away) then we go into lockdown. She could have the kids for months.
That is the biggest concern right now.... for those parents living hours apart in different towns or particularly interstate.... There's not too much comfort in the FCCoA press release on that point either, except maybe paragraph 12 which says >>> "It is imperative that, even if the orders cannot be strictly adhered to and are varied by the parties, the parties ensure that the purpose or spirit of the orders are respected when considering altering arrangements, and that they act in the best interest of the children" <<<<<<

It uses the word IMPERATIVE (meaning literally, of vital importance, crucial) that the SPIRIT of the orders are to be respected....

Having the children removed for months from the primary carer is not in keeping with the spirit of the orders..... Perhaps it's therefore reasonable enough to not send a child (interstate especially) at this point in time due to different states acting unilaterally with strict isolation laws & the very real possibility of lock downs..... Temporarily at least, I'm guessing if lock downs are going to happen they will be in the next week or so..
 

sammy01

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27 September 2015
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Bloody typical - I lost count how many times that press release uses the word 'may'
I reckon the leadership shown over what to do can best be summed up with a stupid piece of Aussie jargon.... Yeah nah...

For the second time i'm not gonna follow the rules. The first time was choosing to stop going to work instead of waiting for the government to tell me... The second will be refusing to comply with my court orders... Wow - I'm becoming quite the rebel. Heck - I'm gonna wear my underwear that has 'Saturday' written on the them today...
 

Tim W

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I suppose then the next bun fight is going to be over what constitutes 'half of school holidays' under current bio measures, & if schools are closed for months how you would interpret the beginning & end of school holidays..... That is why I think (in the absence of any agreement to do otherwise) you should go by the gazetted dates for school terms....
I suggest that it's a straighforward (well, straightforward for lawyers) question of statutory interpretation.

You start by remembering that things don't change, unless they change.
The variable here is not the order, and not the parent's conevenience/ wishes/ rights etc.

Next , you look at the plain and ordinary meaning of the words, and, if any there are express ones, at dates.

For example, if the School Holidays start a week early, then, unless there are orders that expressly say so, the start date of the school holidays is the new date.
Then (assuming that there is no change to the back to school date) half is whatever half is. *
But, if an order says "5 April" (or whatever), or something like
"The Tuesday before Good Friday", or "On the first day of Ramadan", or
"the Thursday before the June long weekend", then that's that.

This is different to a school having extras "pupil free days".
Those are term time - even if there's more of them, and even if they come in the last week of term, or the (would-have-been) first week of the next term.

Also just to chuck in another curly.... if Vic goes into lock down (very likely) the idea is that whoever is in that household at the time, REMAINS within that exclusive 'bubble', I imagine for at least 14 days... Interesting times
Two ways to approach that.
It would not be a breach of an order to keep kids at Parent 1's place due to a Public Health Order.
Nor would it be a breach of a Public Health Order to drive the kids to Parent 2's house, in compliance with an order.
Stuff is never interpreted in a way that requires somebody to commit an offence of breaching one, in order to comply with another.
Note that that's a pretty arcane concept, and your average Plod On The Street may not remember it from their training.

-------------------------
* Of course, if/ when schools close for an indefinite period, then there will be a more complex question to deal with.
 

Atticus

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6 February 2019
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if the School Holidays start a week early, then, unless there are orders that expressly say so, the start date of the school holidays is the new date.
Then (assuming that there is no change to the back to school date) half is whatever half is. *
Not sure what you've added to the discussion..... That's the point I was making.... It's looking increasingly like there IS a change to the back to school date. SO... how is half determined? That is why IMO, in the absence of any agreement, the gazetted school term dates is probably the best dates to adhere to.... It's still in keeping with the purpose & spirit of the order, & allows the kid/s the allocated times with each parent..
Of course, if/ when schools close for an indefinite period, then there will be a more complex question to deal with.
Well that's kinda the specific question that people will most likely be wanting as much clarity around as possible, & fairly soon, & kinda what this topic is about.... In the meantime, the media release from the FCCoA goes at least some way to addressing the issue & how parents should deal with it