Madonna and her ex-husband Guy Ritchie continued their transatlantic custody battle over 15-year-old son Rocco in court on Wednesday afternoon. The dispute began in December when Rocco was ordered by a judge to return Stateside to figure out his living situation. The teen chose not to return, and has instead been residing with his father in London.
Neither Madonna nor Guy were present for Wednesday's court hearing, opting instead to listen in via telephone conference call. The former couple's attorneys agreed that Rocco will for the time being remain in London, where he is enrolled in school.
Madonna and Guy Ritchie are embroiled in a custody battle over son Rocco
Rocco's court-appointed attorney said, "In almost every conversation, [Rocco] has stressed to me how stressful [the very public custody battle is]. He is going to school now, which is a great step forward, and the parents should be commended that they were able to reach this decision ... He's enjoying himself there; he's having a good educational experience; the school seems to be a great fit for him."
New York Supreme Court Judge Deborah Kaplan said she would not remove Rocco from his school, since both parties have agreed he should maintain a "normal" life. "No one is disrupting this household. The child is in school; let us try to allow him to go forward in the most normal way," she said. "We're not forcing the child to leave school. His mother isn't asking that."
A judge ruled that Rocco should remain with Guy and step-mum Jacqui Ainsley for the time being
The judge continued, "I am happy that time and effort went into the research of finding a school that he is comfortable with ... [He's] succeeding and liking it. The mother hasn't asked that the child be removed from school during this period of time while [custody is resolved].”
The New York judge also stated it would be in Rocco's best interests to keep the matter out of the spotlight, and urged his parents to find a custody resolution outside of the courtroom. She said, "I'm encouraging the parents to continue to resolve this matter in the best way possible for the child to take this tremendous pressure off their son.”
Madonna recently shared a photo of her son, writing: "I miss this boy"
While a lawyer for Rocco has said he "does not want to return to New York," the teen is not far from his mother's thoughts. Just last week the "Material Girl" singer penned a heartfelt message for her son. Sharing a photo of Rocco at a happier time with a floral garland around his neck she wrote, "I miss this boy so full of life so full of love! I hope we see that Leo Sun soon. The light is blinding!"
Prior to that, the 57-year-old posted a throwback photo of herself with Rocco. She captioned the mother-son picture, "Tu me manqué," which translated means "I miss you."
Rocco's parents are expected to be in New York City for their next hearing this summer. The pair's hearing is tentatively scheduled for June 1.