This spring during our family's teacher conferences, something struck me as quite amazing.
I always knew that our school had amazing teachers, staff and administrators. But I learned that the family of students at our school was just as unique.
Every school has it's share of problems and I am sure ours is no different but I will share some of our amazing experiences.
First of all, you could always read my "Flash Back Friday" post about how amazing our school was a few years back when our daugher's CGM turned up missing during the school day. And that, indeed, was an extraordinarily stressful day and what everyone at our school did was so above and beyond that it made us feel such a strong embrace of support.
But what we encountered this year also further made us realize that sometimes you just get lucky and find yourself in a school environment that has managed to get it right in so many ways.
While sitting in our teacher conferences and hearing about reading and writing and math, our T1D daughter's teacher also shared with us a story of how her classmates show support for her and the other T1D child in her class. See, there are only two type 1 kids in their school building. And they have been placed together in the same classroom since kindergarten and both our family and the other T1D family appreciates this placement very much. These two awesome T1D kids have grown to support each other in the school environment. They walk to the nurse together, to lunch together, etc. And when the class has a daily snack I was so impressed to learn that when they need to take the time to walk to the nurse to test and bolus their insulin, the class (not at the teacher's prompting) but the CLASS of 2nd grade kids asks if they can wait until their T1D classmates return to begin their snack! TALK ABOUT SUPPORT! Talk about a great group of kids! Now, I have heard stories of kids in other schools feeling awkward about their T1D because other kids pick on them for being different and this breaks my heart. I have even heard of teachers and staff not being supportive! But to hear that a classroom full of 2nd grade kids is this supportive and kind to a couple of kids that are "different" warms my heart and in light of the other stories that are out there and makes me so thankful that my daughter can experience such a supportive environment.
A couple of months ago during all of our snow days, the lunch menu at school was a little mixed up for a couple of days (at least I got it confused) and on a day when I thought my VERY picky T1D daughter would be buying the school lunch, it turns out there was not what she wanted on the actual lunch menu.
I got this email from the school nurse:
I want you to know how wonderful our cafeteria staff is in accommodating [your daughter]. She is buying today and they are following February 3rd menu – she thought it was the bagged lunch. [Your daughter] did not like what they were serving (chicken patty and turkey roll up) so they are making her a special lunch – pbj, bug bites, oranges, juice, and milk. Doesn't sound like a big deal, but trust me they are sooooo easy to work with.
Now, I have heard stories of kids at other schools being turned away for not having lunch money or in this case when the child couldn't eat what they were serving the parent being called to bring in other food. That the lunch staff went out of their way to make her a special lunch... again - above and beyond.
Our school nurse.
I can't say enough good things. She cares for our daughter and all kids in that school as if they were her own kids. One of those AMAZING nurses. Just an amazing person. She had taken the time when the two T1D kids started kindergarten to get specialized training on their pumps (at the time they had both worn the same type of pump) and we brought reps from the company in to train her on the equipment. Her willingness to learn all about T1D and to keep us informed throughout the day is so much appreciated. It has never seemed as a chore for her or an annoyance, as I have heard other school nurses treat the chores of treating a T1D child on a daily basis. She truly CARES for our children and that is indeed a blessing.
These are just a few examples of what make our school a FAMILY.
We live it every day and we appreciate every moment of it.
We recognize how fortunate we are that our children can grow up in such an accepting and nurturing environment.
We support our amazing school and they support us.
And we thank them - all of them - for doing such an amazing job.