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PostPosted: Tue Apr 10, 2007 10:12 pm 
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Joined: Fri Feb 24, 2006 5:26 pm
Posts: 12
Location: Erin, Ontario
Hi there,

My daughter is peanut allergic and is to go to SK in September. We reside in Erin, Ontario and we would like her to attend a catholic school near our home.

The problem is this particular school does not practice a nut-free (aware) policy.
I met with the Principal last August before school started and this school makes the classroom only as nut-free as possible.

I decided that because of the newly discovered allergy to keep our daughter in her Nursery school that offered a JK program. I feel that she is safe, the staff are well informed and educated and practice a nut/peanut free program. The policy started before September 05 because we were suspecious that she was allergic to peanuts.
The Nursery School did that even though they were not required to. I am aware that is about to change this May 2007.

Recently an incident occured in this catholic school. The mother of this 10 year old girl called to let me know. Snow days happen and often with the school open #'s of students are down. They do combo classes and the peanut allergic girl was sitting to eat her lunch and the child beside her was eating a PEANUT BUTTER SANDWICH!!!
Can you believe this, and then the peanut allergic child was put out in the hall by herself to eat her lunch!!! It was like she was punished for having this allergy! ( The school apparently said they are well aware of her allergies and are trained as someone informed her mother at drop off.)
If that was the case then why is the peanut allergic child in a classroom next to another child eating Peanut Butter???

Latter that day when her mother picked her up she requested to her Mom to go to another local school that she was aware had a no nuts policy.

I was already scared and confused on this whole issue but after talking to this mother I realized that trying to have certain classrooms "nutfree" while others are not should not be an option. This Mother has written a letter to the teacher, and C.C to various people.
I have not heard back from her but am curious to see if because of this occurence maybe things will change??

I want to help make these needed changes but am not sure where to start ??? I tend to be more emotional at times because this is my precious 5 year girl and her safety and well-being.

Can you help??

Thanks!

Lori :? :?


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 10, 2007 10:55 pm 
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Joined: Tue Nov 29, 2005 4:04 pm
Posts: 2044
Location: Gatineau, Quebec
Start by reading Sabrina's Law, then find out what your school board policy looks like, and then figure out whether the school is carrying out this policy appropriately.

See http://www.allergicliving.com/features.asp?copy_id=41 for links to Sabrina's Law and other helpful info.

Also read the online version of the national anaphylaxis guidelines at www.allergysafecommunities.ca .

Sabrina's Law does not mean banning foods necessarily, but it does mean
- taking measures to reduce the risks to anaphylactic students
- communicating with the entire school community about anaphylaxis
- ensuring that staff and others who come in regular contact with students at risk are trained to deal with an emergency

Some schools (like ours - in Quebec) do only have certain classrooms peanut- and nut-free. So it's not unusual for that to happen. But it does sound like the system sort of fell apart in this case - and they need to think about what should happen if a class is combined at the last minute.

It would be nice if all schools would get with the program and use their brains to realize that having PB sandwiches next to a child who is allergic to peanuts is not the best way to reduce the risk to that child, but some need a bit of help and encouragement. I would take this incident as a learning opportunity for everyone - the existing system didn't work, so how can the system be fixed? As a parent, your best weapon is education - your own education at first and then the education of others - and a willingness to work with the school to ensure that children at risk are provided a safe environment. Maybe they could come up with a way to ensure that there are a few "peanut" tables so that those with peanut products eat only at that table when classes are combined. (And then the kids eating the peanut or nut products must wash their hand and mouths very thoroughly with soap and water - and someone must wash the table with bleach.)

Take a look around some of these forums, in particular this one and perhaps the Peanut one, and you will likely see some other helpful advice as well.

K.

_________________
Karen, proud Mom of
- DS1 (12 yrs): allergic to cashews, pistachios, Brazil nuts, potatoes, some legumes, some fish, pumpkin seeds; OAS
- DS2 (1o yrs): ana. to dairy, eggs, peanuts; asthma


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 18, 2007 8:02 pm 
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Joined: Sat Sep 16, 2006 6:50 pm
Posts: 205
Location: Ontario, Canada
Hi Lori,

I can't offer much help about making changes in your school other than asking your allergist to write the school a letter explaining the severity of the allergy and that the allergen must not be in the room with your child.

I am keeping my daughter out of JK as well. I feel she is safer at her nursery school. Once she is in regular school she will be expected to carry her Epipen with her and I don't think that she is ready for that responsibility.

_________________
daughter: 6 years tree nuts, peanuts


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 18, 2007 10:33 pm 
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Joined: Tue Nov 29, 2005 4:04 pm
Posts: 2044
Location: Gatineau, Quebec
I totally second that idea to have a letter from the allergist. We did that this past year for my youngest (severe allergies to dairy, egg, peanut) and I think it helped the school realize the seriousness of the allergies and where we were coming from with regards to our requests for risk reduction, etc.

I was lucky enough that my allergist let me see the letter first and suggest a few changes to improve it. I know not all allergists are that accommodating, but if you can manage to see the letter before it is sent, all the better.

K.

_________________
Karen, proud Mom of
- DS1 (12 yrs): allergic to cashews, pistachios, Brazil nuts, potatoes, some legumes, some fish, pumpkin seeds; OAS
- DS2 (1o yrs): ana. to dairy, eggs, peanuts; asthma


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 19, 2007 9:16 am 
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Joined: Sat Apr 16, 2005 12:09 am
Posts: 1054
KarenOASG wrote:
I know not all allergists are that accommodating, but if you can manage to see the letter before it is sent, all the better.

What about asking the allergist to give you the letter so that you can show it to whom ever you need to as the need arises -- keeping the original for yourself and providing copies?


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PostPosted: Fri May 18, 2007 7:33 pm 
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Joined: Thu May 17, 2007 11:24 pm
Posts: 8
Location: manitoba, canada
HI
IT IS SO FRUSTURATING. MY DAUGHTER IS IN GRADE 1 IN A VERY SMALL ITTY BITTY TOWN OF ABOUT 2000. I HAVE LETTERS FROM OUR SPECIALIST ACCUALLY I HAVE TWO LETTERS EXPLAINING HOW SEVERE MY LITTLE GIRL IS. AND IT DOES NOT SEEM TO MATTER. YOU STILL GET "WELL HOW BAD IS SHE?" OR IS SHE REALLY THAT BAD?" i FOUND IT WAS EASIER TO TEACH HER HOW TO KEEP HERSELF SAFE AT SCHOOL. FOR HER T REMEMBER HER RULES.

BUT MY PROBLEM IS NOT WITH THE SCHOOL IT IS WITH THE PARENTS.THE SCHOOL IS VERY UPSET WITH THE PARENTS. AND ARE HOSTING A ALLERGY EDUCATION
NIGHT. IT MAY HELP YOU. THEY ARE INVITING THE SCHOOL BOARD, TRUSTEES,WE HAVE A U.R.I.S. NURSE WORKING WITH THE SCHOOL.HER G.P. WILL BE THERE ASWELL AS HER SPECIALIST WILL BE ON VIDEO CONFRENCE. TO HELP EDUCATE THESE PARENTS AND ANSWER ANY OF THERE QUESTIONS. BUT LET ME TELL YOU IT WAS NOT EASY TO GET THIS I CRIED ALOT, I GOT ALOT OF VERBAL ABUSE FROM OTHER PARENT. WE THE SCHOOL INCLUDED THOUGHT THAT THE PARENTS WERE KEEPING HER SAFE. IT CAME TO OUR ATTENTION WHEN A PARENT AT A PARENT COUCIL MEETING LET IT OUT OF THE BAG. THAT IT WAS EASIER FOR HER TO USE AN EGG( WHICH SHE ADMITTED TO USEING )THEN IT WAS FOR HER TO USE A SUBSTITUTE.
I HAVE DONE EVERYTHING FOR THESE PARENTS FROM GIVING THEM SAFE SNACK LISTS, LISTS OF EVERYTHING THAT THIS KID CAN EAT. COORDINATING A SAFE SNACK IN THE AFTERNOON.
SORRY I AM VENTING NOW
BUT NOW THAT THE ADMINISTRATION CAUGHT WIND THAT THIS IS WHAT PARENTS WERE DOING THEY ARE COMMING UP WITH A NEW POLICY TO KEEP MY KID SAFE.
HER SCHOOL IS ALREADY PEANUT/NUT FREE,FISH FREE,AND KNOW IT WILL BE EGG FREE.
HOORAY!!
AND IF THE PARENTS DONNOT LIKE THAT. IF THEY INSIST ON SENDING THE ALLERGIC FOODS THERE IS CONSIQUENCES:
FIRST TIME THE FOOD IS SENT HOME WITH A WARNING
SECOND TIME THE FOOD IS SENT HOME WITH A SECOND WARNING
THIRD TIME YOU WILL NEED TO FIND ALTERNATE ARRANGMENTS FOR YOUR CHILD YOU WILL NOT BE ALLOWED TO SEND FOOD TO SCHOOL.



NOW LET'S SEE IF THE SCHOOL DOES WHAT THEY SAY!!

THANKS FOR LETTING ME VENT. I COULD NEVER DO THIS BEFORE I FEEL MUCH BETTER

_________________
7 yr old with food allergies. egg, treenut, shellfish,fish,cat and enviromental and penicillin. aswell as severe athsma & excema needs to carry 2 epi-pens
12 yr old athsma,seasonal allergies
hubby-athsma, anaphylaxis to bees and wasp


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