What is the 504 that I keep seeing referenced? I tried to google it and did not really understand exactly what it is...

On Sep 17, 2007

You'll find a lot of discussion of "504 plans" on the Schools threads. Secton 504 refers to the law that requires schools to make accomodations for children with disabilities (including "hidden" disabilities like severe food allergies)

Here are some links that might help:





On Sep 18, 2007

Wow! I can see I have a lot of reading, researching to do. THANK YOU! I am wondering though, my kids are in a private school now, is this something that only public schools have to do? And where do you start? I know I can read and learn all of this needed info but if anyone wants to give a tip on where to start I appreciate NY ADVICE... THANKS! lisa

On Sep 18, 2007

Section 504 applies to any school that receives federal funding (such as for a school lunch program.)

Schools that don't get federal funding still have to abide by the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) except if they are religious schools.

What kind of private school are your kids attending?


------------------ Mom to 8 yr old PA/TNA daughter and 4 yr old son who is allergic to eggs.

On Sep 19, 2007

The very first step in pursuing a 504, I think, is obtaining medical documentation and establishing eligibility.

Your doctor may or may not be familar with a 504 process, but regardless, he or she can provide the information you'd need to prove a hidden disability. There are sample doctor letters posted in the 504 threads, I think.

It's important to focus on first establishing eligibility and not discuss accomodations. It's easy to get bogged down in accomodations, but as long as you've established eligiblity, then the school must provide safe accomodations.

How receptive your school is to the process can vary wildly - some parents don't have any trouble, others have a major fight. I'd hope for the best and be prepared for the worst.

Good luck!

On Sep 19, 2007

I also wanted to add - if you decide in the end that pursuing a 504 isn't worth it, the medical documentation is still a good thing to have in your child's file, and can even be helpful in dealing with family members who "don't get it." (They may be more likely to believe a doctor than an "overprotective" parent.)

On Sep 19, 2007

Right now my kids are in a private school that is affilated with a church, I do not think they receive any funding. I am not committed to this school and I am researching other schools, my kids are only 5 and we have only been in school going on the second year. So far it has been fairly easy to communicate with the teachers about my son but I am trying to find out what other schools around here do for food allergic kids... I am in Alabama, way behind the rest of the country in almost everything. So it sounds like public schools would probably be the ones to be familiar with such a plan? I am trying to learn about other private schools I have considered but my main goal is of course to be somewhere who can protect my child, it would be great to find a place where they ALREADY know what to do... I have had a food allergy plan (from the food allergy network website) on file at the school and daycare he attends but this sounds like a much more solid ground to stand on. Thanks.