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PostPosted: Wed Jun 25, 2008 11:26 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jun 03, 2008 9:08 pm
Posts: 41
Hi there,

I just found out today that the nursery school we registered our son at for Sept. can no longer take him due to his severe allergies which includes contact issues. We met with them a few times and they said that they were going to be putting in place Sabrina's law this summer for the new year to help have the proper policies in place to accomodate him (as well as any other possible allergy children). However after they talked to our regional health, and the other staff at the school they said that they aren't able to take him anymore.

One of the things they said was that we might want to try and find another nursery school which isn't a multi-functional facility (as they are also a church so that is a problem for the regional health as they can't guarantee that the other users of the area won't keep it clean or leave some bag of cheese or something behind a toy that he could find), come back when he isn't so severely allergic anymore (not sure if that'll ever happen but hopeful you never know!), or possibly they are going to discuss the potential option of having us being allowed to have a one-on-one teacher with him due to his special safety needs like children with other special needs but this would be very expensive for us unless we as the parents were the ones able to do it, but they just put this out there they have to look into whether or not it is even possible still).

One of the other things that they were concerned about was that we had two different treatment methods for when he has an allergic reaction. Since he has reactions sometimes 3 times a week (if we try taking him out, it happens as he has contact issues to dairy which is everywhere despite our best efforts to wipe everything around him). Most of these reactions are fairly mild (no breathing difficulties) as they are from contact so he gets some hives, sometimes puffs up and swells etc. but since we know he hasn't injested any dairy we give benedryl, wash him down and watch him. Otherwise, we would be giving an epi-pen weekly and be way to frequent at the local hospital unneccessarily.

But when he is at a nursery school, they were saying that at any sign of an allergic reaction (a couple hives) they would have to administer his epi-pen and call 911. But if a kid didn't have his hands washed before coming to school like they ask parents to do and touched Zachary, then he would get some allergic reactions, but wouldn't requie his epi-pen just benedryl. But, if they saw him have a serious reaction then of course give him his epi-pen immediately. It's a grey area, I understand that, but what other options are there when you are dealing an allergy that extends to contact? We don't want him to have to have an epi-pen every day he's there or else he just couldn't be there?

As of right now, it doesn't look hopeful for him to be able to join a nursery school for the Fall. It's not that big of deal right now cause he is so young, but it feels a little bit more of a taste of what we are going to have to face as he gets older. He's a really good little boy who loves other children and would really benefit from a nursery school environment (rather than home with mommy or nana all the time). We were really starting to get excited about him being able to go to nursery school like other children so I feel heartbroken that he got rejected due to his allergy (but better that he not go and be kept safe I guess in the end).

So my question to you all is have you come across this as well? Those with contact issue allergies what type of nursery school did you find that was accomodating and what policies did they put in place to keep your child safe and yet be able to participate? How do you handle the difference between knowing when to administer the epi-pen and not? Has anyone else faced a school/daycare etc. not accepting their child due to their allergies? Does this happen at elementry school level as well, or at that level they have to make accomodations by law? Any other experiences you all have had that would give us further insight would be much appreciated.

Thanks so much! I have much appreciated having this forum as a resource during these times!

Zachary's Mom :)


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2008 2:04 am 
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Joined: Sat Oct 01, 2005 8:55 pm
Posts: 412
Location: Vancouver, BC
I don't have any answers for you, but I am sorry this has happened to you.

I hope you find something that will work for your family and your boy.

With Sabrina's Law in place, is it possible for you to ask the Health region to find a place for you that would be safe? If they are in charge of monitoring anaphylaxis in nursery schools, they may know what centre would work best.

In BC we have childcare resource groups that act as referral networks - is there something like that available to you?

It is situations like this where not having kids with anaphylaxis designated as having a disability is very hard on the family. Could you approach it from that angle...that this is a phylsical differentness that warrants special care and support, and see if you can get some help that way. If anaphylaxis was considered a disability, I believe that you would have better access...

I understand the people who do not want to be viewed as "disabled" by their allergy, but all kids should have the right to education, even at the nursery school level, and kids with anaphylaxis are often turned away based on their allergy. If they were designated, this would not happen, supports would be put in place, or placements would be made to accomodate them, or something.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2008 6:35 am 
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Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 11:17 pm
Posts: 6456
Location: Ottawa
I am assuming that you are in Ontario. Here is the Ontario Ministry of Child and Youth Services page. Click on the search button on the left navigation bar caled "find licenced child care"
http://www.ontario.ca/ONT/portal51/licensedchildcare

The Ministry website offers some good general information regarding interviewing child care agencies.

Ask questions of the agency and listen between the answers. Ask how thay plan to accommodate your child and then offer suggestions to tweek their plans.

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Daughter: asthma, allergies to egg, milk, peanuts, tree nuts, most legumes (not soy) & penicillin. Developing hayfever type allergies.
Husband: no allergies
Me: allergies to some tree that flowers in May
Cat: allergic to beef, pork and lamb


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 29, 2008 9:03 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jun 03, 2008 9:08 pm
Posts: 41
Thanks Aaron's mom and Susan for the help. I spoke again with the nursery school and they have been really nice to try and get me a contact at the regional health for further help, hopefully I can touch base with them later this week. They said they will take Zachary if we can have a one-on-one volunteer shadow him while he is there (this is not ideal though but we'll see).

We have talked to another place now that said that they can accomodate his allergies, which was really nice to hear. We are going to do a tour with them in a week to learn more, hopefully that will work out.

It's challenging to try and find somewhere, but I think it will be good for him to have some more socialization and play with other kids rather than at home with Mom or Nana all the time as he's such a little social boy :) I'll keep you posted on how it all goes, thanks again for the help!

Cheers,


Zachary's Mom :)


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 01, 2008 11:11 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 6:53 pm
Posts: 1454
Location: Canada
[Edited to add-- oops. Upon reading the entire thread, I see that the issue has been resolved, and my advice doesn't really apply anymore. But I'll leave it up here anyhow![

This sounds like a tough situation, and I don't have any experience with dealing with nursery schools (so you may need to take my advice with a grain of salt), but here is what comes to mind --

Has the nursery school attempted to reduce the chances of contact reactions? I realize contact reactions would probably be impossible to eliminate completely, but do the kids have to wash their hands after eating? Would it be possible to ask other parents not to send in finger food containing cheese coatings (like cheesies/ cheesy crackers)?

I do understand why the daycare would be concerned about your son's safety as well as about liability issues, but have you asked your allergist for an "action plan"? (i.e. a detailed plan outlining which symptoms should prompt what treatment) While it may be appropriate to administer epinephrine at the first sign of a reaction for most people, it doesn't sound like this is the best option for your son . . .. and in my opinion, the daycare should treat your son as an individual case rather than following a general anaphylaxis management policy. If your doctor agrees that an epipen need not be administered with localized hives, do you think that the daycare would agree to alter their policy?


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 06, 2008 8:40 pm 
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Joined: Sat Oct 07, 2006 10:26 am
Posts: 18
Hi!
I am sorry to hear about all the trouble you have had, I know it can be pretty scary with these little guys (we're going through the same thing). My daughter has a few other needs but as far as the allergies, I think that the best place we have found has been Montessori. They usually only let a child bring A fruit or A vegetable and they supply crackers that are safe for the kids (and are willing to do whatever they can to make sure it is safe). I think a lot of Montessori's are like this so maybe that could be a good place?

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AR - allergic to peanuts, hazelnuts, tree nuts, raw milk, eggs, peas, legumes, sunflower seeds, sulphites, food colourings (some), mushrooms, honey, shellfish, dogs, cats, birds, licorice, pedialight, strawberries, kiwi.
husband - asthma
me- dust mites


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