There is a special "Secret Santa" type program for teachers that I signed up for at redditgifts.com. I signed up in passing after seeing a friend post on it, and much to my surprise a couple of weeks later- this Saturday- this lovely gift showed up at my door! It is called the KidBox Cover by KaysCase and I love it. I was afraid the foam would be too thin or flimsy when I put it on my wish list, but I had yet to find a case with a handle that was lightweight- the verdict is in and it's not flimsy! I have tried out an Otterbox and Griffin Survivor -They are definitely good cases, but they are also pretty heavy! I still find them very good choices for a child with direct access to an iPad who is a bit on the destructive side, but for a situation where the adult is in control of the iPad, but is working with kids- I think this KidBox is the perfect compromise, until those three team up to make a KidBox with Griffin's screen protector and Otterbox's hard snap-on lid ;) It does not have a built in screen protector, but my secret Santa sent me one as well! I'll see how it holds up with my preschool special needs students, especially. If need be, I believe there are protective "faceplates" I could purchase- there is some wiggle room to install something like that over the iPad screen but inside the case. Also, the iPad seems decently recessed in the case so that if it were to fall on its face it would be just fine. Cross fingers!
It is still easy to charge without taking it out, I can access the volume and on/off switch too. And I love that I can use the handle as the stand. It will stand up in landscape mode on the handle -it seems a little precarious as if it might fall over but it hasn't on a smooth surface. I can fold it the other way to have a comfortable angle for typing data or using with a kiddo on the floor. I think it is great for a therapist or teacher. It would probably be great for most parents to use with their children too, but if you have a child who bites or tears at things I am not sure how it would withstand that, which would be a concern if I ever manage to get a device loaning program established for local parents. (Some of my students might help me figure out the answer first ;) )
Anyhow no more whining about finding a protective but lightweight case with a handle. I think this is perfect for my needs! Thank you, C.W.M. - I will be figuring out a way to pay this forward ;)