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Middle school logistics

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by Paula+four, Jul 23, 2011.

  1. Paula+four

    Paula+four Approved members

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    My son is headed to a small middle school in the fall. The kids are not allowed to carry backpacks between classes, only binders. In elementary he kept his kit on the classroom counter and used it as needed. But now he will rotate classrooms. Hopefully he'll be willing to carry the kit but I certainly don't want it stuffed in a locker.

    Any tips would be appreciated. He's on an Omnipod so the PDM is not attached to him.

    Thank you.
     
  2. CAGrandma

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    Obviously he must have the necessary diabetes supplies with him at school, regardless of which class he is in or what the rules about backpacks are. Keeping them in a locker at most schools would not be an option to me - I'd think it a must that he have his test kit, juice or glucose tabs, etc. with him. There are some small backpacks that would work well. My grandson uses a camoflage patterned fabric covered lunch box with a shoulder strap for his stuff.

    As far as the 'rule' about backpacks, you should not have a problem getting this exception into his 504. And yes, you do need a 504!
     
  3. McKenna'smom

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    Yes, get a 504 and state that he must be able to take his supplies with him and test as needed. You can get a small backpack for him to put them in.
     
  4. Sarah Maddie's Mom

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    We have the same policy here.

    I think you have 3 issues.

    1. Get (as others have said) a 504 and be sure that it included the right to carry and have access to all D supplies at all times

    2. Finding a bag that he will be comfortable carrying when no one else is carrying a bag.

    3. Making sure that he's comfortable doing what needs to be done wherever and in front of whom ever, as he moves from classroom to classroom and from one group of kids to another.

    Middle school can be a really challenging time. The kids all want to fit in and D makes that hard. You just have to really think through the school day and help him anticipate when he'll be most likely to need to do D stuff and work with him and the school to make sure that he has the support, time and space to take care of his D.

    Good luck.
     
  5. MTMomma

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    Deep pockets

    DS wears cargo type shorts and pants most of the time because of the deep pockets. He carries his insulin pen, meter, strips, lancet and glucose tabs with him always. This is spelled out in his medical plan and covered by his 504. He keeps juice, snacks and more supplies in his locker and also a plastic box with more things in the nurses office. He is 13 and this has worked well the past couple years.
     
  6. Darryl

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    Our daughter is 13 and also uses the Omnipod. Each year since 8th grade we've asked for a meeting with the principal, nurse, guidance counslor, and teacher(s) before school starts, explain what she needs (permission to carry certain items, eat and test BG in class, etc.), and provide some bags with glucose and brief printed information for each teacher. They have never objected to this meeting or accomodating any of her needs, so we've never asked for or gone through the hassle of a 504. If you meet with them and they have no objections, that's probably all you need to do.
     
  7. Flutterby

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    Get a 504. Depending on when School starts for you, now may be a good time for you to call. Most schools are great about a 504, after all it protects not only you and your son, but the school as well. This way its spelt out and everyone is on the same page. It something comes up, you can easily refer to the 504. 504s come in especially handy when there are subsititute teachers, middle school is different than elem. school.

    There should be no problem with him carrying a small bag, maybe one of those nylon sinch sak things the kids carry now, just a basic bag.. he could easily fit what he needs in there.. and keep extra's in his locker, that way he's only having to carry tabs or a snack/juice on him and not everything he'd need for the day.. if he uses something then he can grab something else from his locker to put in his bag.
     
  8. TheTestingMom

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    I echo everyone else....Get a 504 in place!

    My son wear a SpiBelt, it's so small and slender that you can't even see it under his shirt, and it doesn't bounce when moving around.. The one he wears is called Kid's Dual Pocket Diabetic. http://store.spibelt.com/product-p/7bb-k030-001-diabetic.htm However since yours is a teenager he may need the adult size. :)
    Each pouch has a small slit in it for tubing. I ended up sewing them closed because they became big enough for the lancet to slip through. He likes to wear his pump in his pants pocket, the meter in one pouch of the belt, and the strips, lancet and a tube of skittles in the other pouch.
    I think this would be a great things for a middle school kid, discrete yet having all the necessities with him.

    Good Luck!
     
  9. obtainedmist

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    One idea is a pencil bag that goes into the binder for holding the D stuff. Kids don't want to be different from others at this age and even if he gets a go ahead for a backpack...he might not want to.
     
  10. chbarnes

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    Chris carries things in a small, 2 compartment camera bag. One compartment holds his PDM, the other holds his multiclix, alcohol wipes, test strips and a couple of packs of fruit snacks. It has gone with him everywhere almost since diagnosis. He carries his Dexcom in his pocket - and prefers it that way.

    The camera bag works at two levels, his friend all know what it is and could help if there was a problem. On the other hand he doesn't feel self-conscious carrying it around.
     
  11. Paula+four

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    Thank you all for your replies. I guess I should have stated that we definitely do have a 504 and the school is wonderful to work with. They have granted everything we have asked for so I know he can carry whatever he wants.

    My concern really is what my son will be willing to carry when no one else is carrying a bag. He has the camo lunchbox for his supplies and he's good about carrying it around. I know he's going to want to leave it in his locker at school because he'll think that is close enough. But I completely disagree. He is comfortable testing in front of everyone so that is not the concern.

    I'll talk to him about the cargo pants and pencil pouches. Those might be good ideas for him.

    Thanks everyone!
     
  12. Tigerlilly's mom

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    My son punched a hole in his meter case, puts glucose tablets in the pocket of the case and attaches the meter into his 3 ring binder that he carries to every class. He did not want to carry a bag, but always carries a bag when outside of school.

    Have you asked your son how he plans to carry his meter? He may already have a solution in mind, or may come up with a great one on his own.:cwds:
     
  13. Paula+four

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    I did ask my son and he's not sure either so we are looking for ideas. Thank you!
     
  14. Flutterby

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    I would let your son have complete control over what he wants to carry around.. maybe a pencil case? they have ones that clip into binders, it should carry all he needs and won't look strange. But you definitely want something that he's willing to carry around so you know he'll actually carry it. :)
     
  15. cm4kelly

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    I'm a middle school teacher

    I teach 8th graders, so I have to agree that even if your son was allowed to carry a backpack per a 504, he probably wouldn't want to because it might draw attention to him. Middle schoolers DO NOT want to be seen as different.

    I would agree that the best bet would be cargo pants or a small pouch that would fit in a binder. If you try to get him to carry a backpack, he might be telling you that he carries it, when he actually leaves it in his locker. That could really be a problem if he faces a low blood sugar.

    Good luck! I personally love middle schoolers! He will do great!
     
  16. Caldercup

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    This is what I did. I met with all the teachers the first day and gave them each a small bag with glucose tabs and quick-acting sugar items. I explained the signs to look for and gave them a "cheat sheet," with clear instructions to have an escort to the nurse if he was looking bad -- or to call the nurse ASAP if he looked very bad.

    He did not carry his meter around with him because he was extremely sensitive to drops in BGs at the time and always knew when to react and go to the nurse. But if he needed the meter on him, I just would've put it in his 504.

    Good luck!
     
  17. Beach bum

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    My girls start middle school this year:eek: and are required to carry a Trapper Keeper type portfolio. I got a zipper 3 ring pouch and will put in meter, strips, glucagon and stuff for lows. This way it's one less thing for her to carry (usually carries a purse).

    In the past I have always provided a zip lock with juice/glucose for each special she goes to.
     
  18. hdm42

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    In our middle school, they're not allowed to carry backpacks and they change binders for each class. My son carries a fanny pack or a stringbag, depending on his mood. He has his test kit, novopen, tabs & cell phone with him at all times. We have lots of supplies at the nurse's office, extra tabs & snacks in his locker, and another kit with backup supplies in the gym office.
    I email all his teachers as soon as I get his schedule in the fall. I also create a one page cheat sheet with his photo and the basics of highs and lows, and each teacher, admin that interacts with him and bus driver get a copy.
     

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