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My 5.5 y.o. dd starts kindergarten on Monday. She is 43 lbs and 43 inches tall, I think. We met with the school last week.

It seems that the school does a lot of field trips, and the transportation is done by volunteer parents who drive their own cars. I am looking on the calendar, and there are two field trips in October. On field trip day, each child has to show up to school with their booster, or the parent brings the booster if the parent is driving that day. Because I work full-time during the school day, I cannot volunteer to drive for all the field trips, just some of them. Most of the children in the class are driven to school by their parents, so it's not a problem for them to bring the booster to school the day of the field trip.

Here is where it gets complicated. We live in a different town 25 miles away from the school. My daughter rides a big yellow school bus everyday for 45 minutes one way to get to school. So on field trip day, we have to have our child carry the booster onto the school bus by herself when she goes to school. She also has to be able to disembark from the school bus while carrying the booster by herself. Then she has to reverse the entire process when she goes home because there is no room to store the booster at the school overnight. (The elementary school building used to be a middle school, so each child has a locker, but the entire school does not lock any of the lockers.)

So... The 5 point harness that we use at home is out for field trips because I wouldn't trust another parent to install it correctly. We have a high back booster (Recaro Vivo), but it is very bulky for a child to easily carry. I think any high back booster will have that problem.

So I guess the only choice is to purchase a backless booster for field trip days. The good thing is that my daughter's personality will make the backless booster at least possible. I can instruct my daughter to sit properly and still, and then she will do it.

So the question is, which backless booster should I purchase? It needs to be easily carried by a 5.5 y.o. Light and not bulky is a plus. Easy for her to route the seat belt correctly would also be a good thing. (Can you tell that I know nothing about backless boosters?)

I welcome your suggestions. The first field trip is October 9! Thank you.
 

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The one I use for things like that is a backless TurboBooster. My 2 oldest girls (6 1/2 and 45lbs, 5 1/2 and 38lbs) both ride in Turbo highbacks, so I just pop the back off my oldest girl's booster for her to take the bottom. My younger dd, because she's small for her age, we insist that she stay in a highback and she has no problems with lugging around the base and back both (yes I know she'll be safer in a 5pt at her size, we just moved her out of a Nautilus after a lot of discussing and praying together even though I'd rather she stayed in that harness but she's doig great in the booster)

So I'd say a backless Turbo, its inexpensive and easy to use.
 

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I would not be okay with a 5.5 yr old at only 43 lbs riding in someone elses car in a backless booster. No way. Is there a way you could drive her to school on field trip days? Is there a reason they don't take school buses for field trips?

-Angela
 

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They should still have the back at 5.5 I just bought my Ds a new booster (because of out growing his old booster) and they still need the side support for their heads and necks we went through Albee Baby and bought a Combi booster and he LOVES it it was fairly cheap and he says it is "super comfy"
I would buy a different booster with the back esp. with someone I didn't know driveing my child!
 

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Some things always aren't ideal, the field trip travel arrangements at my DD1's school are also rather interesting. We've got a backless Cosco that I picked up at Target that is really light, lighter then backless Graco ones that I felt. DD1 was still the only child in any booster out of the entire school, sigh.
 

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While a it is not ideal to have a 5 year old in a backless, it sounds like she meets the age, height and weight minimums, so as long as we're talking about seat with head support, it's acceptable.

The Graco backless Turbobooster does an excellent job of correctly positioning the belt, and fits small booster riders well. It would probably be your best bet for this situation, which is definitely one of those 'tough choices' scenarios.

Another possibility to consider is the Ride Safer Travel Vest which is small and portable, but crash tests more like a five-point harness than the booster. The drawback is that she likely will not be able to put it on or properly position the seatbelt herself, and an adult would have to help her with it.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by alegna View Post
I would not be okay with a 5.5 yr old at only 43 lbs riding in someone elses car in a backless booster. No way. Is there a way you could drive her to school on field trip days? Is there a reason they don't take school buses for field trips?

-Angela
I would definitely check with the school district about this. Here in PR, school insurance only covers students, teachers and volunteer parents when they are on the bus provided for the field trip, not driving their private vehicles. Having students in vehicles driven by people who are not their parents during school hours are a HUGE liability, for the school, the district, and the teacher themselves. Frankly, I'm surprised the teacher is willing to risk her license and a personal lawsuit.
 
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