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PostPosted: Tue Jun 27, 2006 9:14 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jun 27, 2006 8:45 pm
Posts: 1
Location: Aurora, Ontario
Looking for some information... My son is starting Grade 1 in September in York Region. He is allergic to Peanuts, Eggs, Banana, Kiwi, Sunflower, Papaya and Latex. His Grade 1 lunch procedure will involve the usual ban on peanut/nuts BUT not his other allergens.... this I can accept. The students eat lunch in their classroom ... this I can accept. I am having difficulty with the lunch "adult" supervision being shared between 3 different but close classrooms. (Classroom parents can also volunteer to supplement this supervision but it won't be consistent). I don't think that one adult divided between 3 classrooms is enough dedicated supervision when there are allergens present in my son's room. In discussions with the schools administration I have been told that it is too costly to provide dedicated supervision to his classroom and that my request was not considered "reasonable" and they were prepared to deal with a reaction should one arise.

My discussions with the school board also tended to focus on what to do if something happens... not preventing exposure to egg, etc... it is up to the school to develop a plan specific to each child.

Is there anyone else within York Region Public (or other Ontario Board) that is dealing with allergens in the classroom? What kind of supervision is provided for lunch / snack? Do you know where any additional funding has come from?

_________________
6year old son allergic to peanuts, eggs, banana, kiwi, sunflower, papaya and latex


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 27, 2006 9:27 pm 
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Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2005 11:21 am
Posts: 687
Location: Cobourg, ON
We will have to deal with this issue sometime in the future. Right now our daughter is in JK. The grade one class in her school has ollder student monitors in the class with a floating teacher in the hall. I think we have a very serious concern that young anaphylactic children who are surrounded by allergens need adult supervision during lunch. The consensus statement by the Canadian Allergists, Anaphylaxis In Schools and Other Settings, recommends adult supervision during meals for young children. Eventually if our principal does not agree with us, we will go to the superintendent and our local trustee to push the issue. The squeaky wheel does get grease. Duty schedules can be juggled to allow a supervisor or EA time could be found.

_________________
13 year old daughter -- lives with life-threatening allergies to milk, tree nuts and peanuts; seasonal allergies (birch, maple, ragweed); pet allergies; asthma; and eczema
10 year old son - no allergies


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 27, 2006 10:21 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 11:17 pm
Posts: 6456
Location: Ottawa
Download a copy of the Legislation for them. It clearly outlines the focus of the policy is towards the reduction of risk to exposure.
Remind them are in charge and ultimatley responsible. How did they expect to dea with the problem? Have a 7 year old diagnose and administer the EpiPen? Now really, who is being unreasonabe?

_________________
Moderator
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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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jul 01, 2006 10:13 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 6:53 pm
Posts: 1454
Location: Canada
Not having adequate supervision at lunch could be a concern from many different angles....i.e. if *anything* happened to a kid when not under supervision, the principal + the school board would be liable. Maybe this could be taken up with the school board...


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 03, 2006 12:03 pm 
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Joined: Tue Nov 29, 2005 4:04 pm
Posts: 2044
Location: Gatineau, Quebec
We had a talk about lunchtime supervision at our local support group. Some schools have 1 adult rotating between 4 classes. Others have grade 6 students watching grade 1 students. I was kind of appalled that they would have such (to my mind) minimal supervision of children eating. What if a kid chokes or something?? Or worse, in our cases?

I'm pretty lucky in that my school (in QC) has 1 adult for each class of kids eating lunch -- these are the kids that are part of the in-school daycare. I'm not sure about the kids that eat in the gym (kids that stay for lunch but who are not part of the daycare.). I had heard that it's about a 1:50 ratio, which is a bit scary, but at least the adults are always present.

Anyway, for young kids with anaphylaxis, I do think that there should be adult supervision at all times when there is food around, especially, as Kate pointed out, when the allergens are present (like for milk, egg, and other things that haven't been totally removed from the environment).

If you go to http://www.allergysafecommunities.ca/de ... atsubid=34 and scroll down to Community, you will see this in the list of risk-reducing recommendations:

Quote:
Provide adult supervision of young children when they are eating or when there is food around.


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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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jul 04, 2006 10:48 am 
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Joined: Sun Mar 05, 2006 1:05 pm
Posts: 528
Location: Burlington, Ontario
Sabrina's law stipulates that the child's individual plan shall contain monitoring strategies. To me, that means especially at eating times!

Don't be afraid to quote from Sabrina's Law and insist on the word "law".

That said, I liked my daughter's grade I teacher, who always ate lunch with the kids. She used to say that it was an "honour" to eat with her kids! If only all teachers were that dedicated!

_________________
15 year old - asthmatic, allergic to cats, dogs, horses, waiting to be "officially" diagnosed for anaphylaxis
12 year old - asthmatic, allergic to tree pollen and mold, OAS
Husband - Allergic to amoxycillin
Self - Allergic to housework only


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 Post subject: schools
PostPosted: Wed Aug 30, 2006 2:41 pm 
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Joined: Wed Aug 30, 2006 2:30 pm
Posts: 41
Location: barrie, Ontario
Lunchtime supervision is a big issue with me at school as well. I asked the principal how can my child be under supervision if the teacher supervising isn't even in the same classroom? She didn't have an answer for that only gave the funds, lack of staff reply. She thought she gave me a good solution which was to have my daughter pick one friend and they could eat in the hall. My daughter is shy to begin with so segregating her because of her special needs is absolutely unacceptable to me not to mention the implication that she would feel punished having to sit in the hall and she strives to be such a good girl.

At my school the older students (I believe gr 6) supervise the class so I feel sorry for those kids I dont' think they know (or their parents) how large of a responsibility they have.

I really feel for you and I don't know what to expect this year in gr 2.

My school also seems to incorporate food into everything, including bake sales, hot dog days, pizza days, serving popcorn for movies, treats for rewards etc., doesn't it drive you crazy !!!!!!! :x

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luvmikids

daughter allergic to dairy,eggs,peanuts, soy, intolerance for potatoes, whole wheat


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Aug 30, 2006 7:43 pm 
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Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2005 11:21 am
Posts: 687
Location: Cobourg, ON
I would suggest contacting trustees, superintendents, the student services office at the board. This is a health and safety issue. Allergies are a disability and our children require proper care and supervision. Accommodations have to be made for children with physical disabilities at lunch times. EA's or lunch room supervisors are found. Just because allergies are a 'hidden disability' does not mean that the needs of our children can be ignored. Keep working on this issue! Next year I will have to fight this battle when my daughter goes into grade 1.

_________________
13 year old daughter -- lives with life-threatening allergies to milk, tree nuts and peanuts; seasonal allergies (birch, maple, ragweed); pet allergies; asthma; and eczema
10 year old son - no allergies


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 Post subject: schools
PostPosted: Thu Aug 31, 2006 8:12 am 
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Joined: Wed Aug 30, 2006 2:30 pm
Posts: 41
Location: barrie, Ontario
Thank you for your advise. It is difficult to know how much to push it because of fear that the school will separate her to keep her safe instead of meeting her needs in the classroom. It may just add to her anxiety/worry about being around other people's food if the school decides she has to eat away from her class. I'll have to make sure I'm armed with reasons why it's unacceptable for her to sit in the hall and eat which would horrify her and I. Already, she really hates being different and when other kids point it out.

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luvmikids

daughter allergic to dairy,eggs,peanuts, soy, intolerance for potatoes, whole wheat


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Aug 31, 2006 1:41 pm 
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Site Admin

Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 11:17 pm
Posts: 6456
Location: Ottawa
It's discriminatory. It punishes the allergic student and alienates her from her peers.
Better, the school should comply with current legislation and supply adequate supervision.
Why are students eating separately in the classrooms? Why are there not cafeterias? It would be easier to monitor and kep clean.
If the long term plan is to have students eat lunch at school, I would expect the schools have plans in place to facilitate this.

_________________
Moderator
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: Fri Sep 01, 2006 2:46 am 
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Joined: Wed Apr 12, 2006 10:55 am
Posts: 29
Location: Newmarket
I can count myself very lucky. We live extremely close to school so I can bring our daughter home for lunch. I am not sure at what point I will allow her to stay for lunch I am not sure of the rotation at lunch but I know that supervision rotates to more then one class during lunch hour.

Our daughter has some of the same allergies to deal with Egg,Peanut, Shrimp,Latex,Banana and Kiwi. She also has asthma . We are going in to meet with principal and teacher tomorrow. Hopefully this year they will have more risk reducing plans in place other then just an emergency plan. We will be pushing again this year for celebrations with no food. Didn't work last year parties still went on.(with healthlier items) But I insisted on checking all the labels before parties and I did find 2 times eggs were listed on the box.

Good news is it seems everyone in the office already was aware of who our daughter was when my husband went in a couple of days ago to set up appointment.

Snack and lunch time should have a supervisor in the classroom if an allergic child is in that class. I am just thinking to myself how lucky it is that I can have our daughter come home for lunch.[/i]


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 Post subject: Any improvments?
PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2007 6:17 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jul 28, 2007 2:17 pm
Posts: 47
Location: Oakville
Another school year started...nothing changed
Where to look for help? We are in Halton Region...
1 teacher supervising 6 classrooms(120 kids) at snack and lunch time, :shock:
Principal have the same old story about lack of recourses, but insist they are very vigilant
What to do?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2007 10:36 pm 
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Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2005 11:21 am
Posts: 687
Location: Cobourg, ON
That is insane. It is not reasonable or safe. I would talk to your superintendent and trustee. This could be challenged legally . A letter from your doctor regarding the needs of your child might help. How old is your child? What grades is the teacher supervising? Allergies aside - what about choking hazards and behaviour issues? Are there any other parents concerned? Maybe they could help you change this.

In our school we initally had one person supervising 3 classrooms this year. At our staff meeting yesterday, one teacher complained that she was not leaving her room because she felt it was unsafe to have one person for 3 rooms. As a result, we changed the duty schedule.

_________________
13 year old daughter -- lives with life-threatening allergies to milk, tree nuts and peanuts; seasonal allergies (birch, maple, ragweed); pet allergies; asthma; and eczema
10 year old son - no allergies


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2007 6:37 am 
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Site Admin

Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 11:17 pm
Posts: 6456
Location: Ottawa
I don't know what the policy was last year as our daughter has just started grade 1 but this year we have a new principal and the students eat in their classroom with their teacher for 20 minutes and then go outside to play. There are 3 adults monitoring in the schoolyard and they are all aware of who has food allergies (delayed or biphasiac reactions).
There is to be no food eaten in the French classes, computer labs, music rooms, hallways or gymnasium. In this way the janitorial staff can increase their focus to those rooms which need it.
I realize that I am very fortunate. I hope that your schools will come around. How much money does it cost? If a child dies are they willing to look you in the eye and say, "I am so sorry, but your child's life was simply not worth $--- to me."?

_________________
Moderator
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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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2007 9:16 am 
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Joined: Sat Jul 28, 2007 2:17 pm
Posts: 47
Location: Oakville
My daughter is in grade one. Teacher that is on duty looks after grades 1 and 2. That is one huge hallway. My daughter is not the only allergic kid ,there is about 10 in school.
I will have to find out a way to contact these parents.This is so unsafe.
I asked about no food on hallways, gym...they just gave me a look...it always comes to " don't worry your daughter has an epi-pen on her, we know how to use it, she will be fine" .
Thank you all for any suggestions


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