There is a never ending influx of (pre-) school notes that need to be signed, read, diarised and often paid. At first I thought this was a temporary thing but I soon found out, this is a big part of having school aged children.
The easiest thing to do is have a 24 hour turn around. The paper comes in you sign it and it goes in your child’s school folder - You have a school folder don’t you?
I am not sure if all schools do this but my daughter has 1 bright red school folder. Homework and notes are transported home via this folder and back to school. Each afternoon at snack time the folder, notes and homework come out and allot of it goes back into the bag as soon as possible.
Make sure you check for school notes on a daily basis.
This is where the 24 hour idea breaks down, sometimes they need a specific piece of paper back at a certain day or they need money for something special on say the Thursday and it is Tuesday today. What to do? I came up with a very easy (and visual) solution.
I placed the names of all the school days on the wall, then I put a plastic sleeve pocket under each day of the week. To make the sleeves a bit firmer I placed a firm A4 cardboard piece of paper in each sleeve. I put some blue tack on the back and this basically created a postal system on the wall. It is very visual so any notes are quickly spotted. In terms of maintaining the system you need to do two things:
• If the piece of paper does not need to go back to school you need to sign it and place it in its respective day.
• Each morning check the todays pocket for notes to bring to school (or even better check it at night for tomorrow).
• As an additional point; it is a good idea to put a note in your diary when you sign the school note.
Besides school notes, I also found it very helpful as a new Kinder Mum to put reminders of special days and requirements in this system. This meant that I placed a card Library books in the Wednesday sleeve and a card “talk time” indicating when my daughter has her presentations, in the Friday sleeve.
If you have more than 1 child this system will still hold well. You just have to make sure the right note goes in the correct folder and bag to the appropriate school or class room.
Finally, if you want, you can really involve the children in this process as well. You can ask them what day it is and point to the folder belonging to that day - they can then check for notes. It is a fun way to get them involved and used to dealing with paperwork at a very basic level.
As a side note: No matter how organized you try to be when you are a busy parent things will occasionally slip through the cracks. Don’t worry about it! You have a system and you will try your very best to do all you can to keep up with the school demands. I think however that trying to aim for perfection in anything that is related to parenthood is futile. Good is good enough, so in regards to school notes being on top of most notes is good enough if it is extremely important you will get a reminder any way.