Anonymity at School RE: Food Allergies.

Posted on: Wed, 06/16/2004 - 12:32am
MommaBear's picture
Joined: 09/23/2002 - 09:00

A plus or a drawback? In what way?

Do some pluses outweigh other drawbacks?

Do you reveal your child's FA status to the general public at school or just agents/ employees by the school?

Is it only on a "Need to Know" basis?

[i]Who, would you say, "Needs to Know"?[/i]

Is there literature "out there" that discusses these issues?

Can you identify who the other FA children are and their specific food allergies at the school your children attend? By name? By face? By both? If so, how were you made aware of this information? Was it through accidental sources, or was it purposefully made known to you?

Feel free to add comments re: Anonymity and FA with regard to work, community, adults, etc.....................

Disclaimer: I am not offering advice in any manner or form.

Posted on: Wed, 06/16/2004 - 1:20am
jtolpin's picture
Joined: 05/28/2003 - 09:00

Waaaaaay to many questions! [img][/img]
[quote]Originally posted by MommaBear:
[B]A plus or a drawback? In what way?
Yes. You will be known as the allergic child's parents (or child). If you cannot have baked goods at school, because of FA's, are the one causing grief for the SOB's that want PB cookies [img][/img] (venting o/t, sorry)
Is it only on a "Need to Know" basis?
Need to know, at school. Teachers (of course) are aware. Parents who Ann sees before/after class are also informed (Caitlin's the ONLY MFA student, though SOME are PA OR DA), and the classroom IS peanut free. Some parents are interested enough to ask questions...
Can you identify who the other FA children are and their specific food allergies at the school your children attend? By name? By face? By both? If so, how were you made aware of this information? Was it through accidental sources, or was it purposefully made known to you?
There is an 'allergy page' on the cabinet IN the classroom. There's only 15 (or under) kids in classroom. The ones with FA's are listed on paper, and what they are allergic to (Privacy? What privacy?) [img][/img] There only 1 Caitlin in class, so shes easy to pick out... Likewise with the other boys/girls names with FA's -- if there were 2 'Jim's, we'd have a tougher time, but easier to pinpoint without even asking (ok, not so easy, we'd have to ask) [img][/img]
Anns playgroup is aware of the allergies (and for her herself) and they TRY to do the right thing... Not always, but sometimes... For example, one mother doesnt want to do playgroup at her house, and wants to do it at McD's.. So, Ann/family don't go that week, especially when its lunch time...

Posted on: Wed, 06/16/2004 - 3:09am
KatiesMom's picture
Joined: 03/01/2000 - 09:00

I like as many people as possible to know about Katie's allergy. In all of Katie's classes and summer camps, it is always announced to the kids that Katie has a peanut allergy. The benefit is that it makes everyone aware. There could be a drawback if a child decides to use the information against her by teasing her but luckily that has never happened.

Posted on: Wed, 06/16/2004 - 5:11am
mcmom's picture
Joined: 06/15/2004 - 09:00

My son's teacher explained to the class (pre-k) in the beginning of the year that he was allergic. Over the year, many of the kids have approached me to ask a question, and some of the parents have told me that their child has told them about it. For me, the more people who know about it, the better. Maybe it will make them think twice before sending their child to school with a PN snack. And since they are so young, I think it's better to introduce it now as just a part of who he is, so that as these kids grow up together it will be familiar to them.

Posted on: Wed, 06/16/2004 - 6:29am
mary beth's picture
Joined: 01/10/2004 - 09:00

I have been very open about Julia's severe nut allergies, b/c, should she have a reaction at school, I want people to recognize it and respond accordingly.
Mary Beth

Posted on: Wed, 06/16/2004 - 9:57am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

I agree with Jason, way too many questions! [img][/img]
We have never chosen for my son to remain anonymous. In fact, we have had newspaper articles done in both towns we've lived in, complete with his picture, to try to educate people re PA. If they have a face to put with the allergy, hoping and all.
Also, in the last town, when he finished each grade, JK and SK, we had a thank-you letter printed in the local newspaper at all.
I do know other people who have chosen for their children to remain anonymous. I have never questioned them as to why.
Now, the questions:-
A plus or a drawback? In what way?
Do some pluses outweigh other drawbacks?
I definitely believe it's a plus for Jesse to be know as having a PA because then someone hopefully on that playground or in that school will know if he is having a reaction.
Drawbacks, certainly. He has been bullied. He has been threatened. He has been called "the peanut kid".
But again, hoping that people knowing who he is will save his life and have weighed the risks I guess (also have signed form for school counsellor each year should Jess have difficulties that he wants to speak with someone about re his allergy or anything else for that matter).
Do you reveal your child's FA status to the general public at school or just agents/ employees by the school?
This year, his allergy was revealed only to the principal, vice principal and then whoever they revealed it to, obviously his teacher. I wanted to send out a personalized introduction letter explaining the "peanut free" classroom, with Jesse's name, actually signed by Jesse, but the principal would not allow this. I have, however, done this in the past. Again, hoping to put a name to the allergy and perhaps people would be more compassionate and understanding.
So, this year does the general public know? No. They know there is a PA child in the Grade 3 class. Parents or other people would only come to know if their children, Jesse's classmates were discussing him specifically. Otherwise, they simply know there is a "peanut free" classroom because there is a PA child.
Is it only on a "Need to Know" basis?
So, no.
Who, would you say, "Needs to Know"?
IMHO, I wouldn't mind if the whole school community knew. Newspaper article stuff again.
Is there literature "out there" that discusses these issues?
Don't know.
Can you identify who the other FA children are and their specific food allergies at the school your children attend?
There are four or five "peanut free" classrooms in my children's school. I know my son is one of the four or five children that require a "peanut free" classroom.
I learned of another PA child because my daughter has a "peanut free" classroom. She was able to tell me who the child was. I know his first name only (we're generally not allowed to know last names here). He does, however, have other food allergies and nearing the end of the school year, I am still unclear as to what exactly they are.
By name? By face? By both? If so, how were you made aware of this information? Was it through accidental sources, or was it purposefully made known to you?
By first name. By face certainly. Again, information came to me from my daughter and also I guess from the school, although not identifying the child, when I signed the form saying I acknowledged my daughter was in a "peanut free" classroom. So, it was purposely made known to me that there was a PA child in my daughter's class, just not specifically who.
Now, I can only assume that there are three other PA children in the school who I cannot identify. I have no reason to need to know who they are because they are not in either of my children's classrooms.
Hope I was clear.
Best wishes! [img][/img]

Posted on: Fri, 09/03/2004 - 11:53pm
MommaBear's picture
Joined: 09/23/2002 - 09:00


Posted on: Sun, 09/05/2004 - 2:15pm
nonutsforus's picture
Joined: 03/28/2002 - 09:00

we are happy to tell anyone about dd's PA.
this year the school staff knows and the parents were told not to send peanut treats b/c there is a student with PA.
I know dd has already told a few of her classmates and a couple of them went to preschool with her and knew already.
No big deal to dd. we have prepared her all along for being able to talk openly and seriously about this.
diadvantages - to date we have not had any problems, but i expect the day will come when there will be some ill-mannered child who will tease her.
I would certainly address the matter immediately with the students parents. Unfortunately, I imagine that parents of children who are inconsiderate are probably also likely to be inconsiderate.
We have a very honest and straightforward relationship with dd and I suppose I will just tell her at that point that there are people in the world who don't care if they are hurtful to others...sorry I know I am going on and's way past my bedtime!
advantages - I think there are many people out there who are just allergy unaware, and by being open we are helping them to understand this issue. maybe we are inadvertantly helping soemone else down the road. Also, I think it makes your child have to be able to take responsibilty for knowing about their allergy so that they can properly respond to questions they are asked by other students.
ok - sorry - forgot what the other questions were!!!!

Posted on: Sun, 09/05/2004 - 9:55pm
darthcleo's picture
Joined: 11/08/2000 - 09:00

In the school system here, pictures of allergic kids are plastered on the walls, with a list of the allergies. There are between 4 and 7 per class, most of the time!
Had we chosen to enter the school system, we would not have had a choice.

Posted on: Sun, 09/05/2004 - 11:34pm
turlisa's picture
Joined: 08/29/2004 - 09:00

Quote:Originally posted by nonutsforus:
[b] I imagine that parents of children who are inconsiderate are probably also likely to be inconsiderate.
Sorry, that statement just kind of slapped me upside my head, screaming respond respond!!! While that is the case for some, not for all. I was the fat kid going thru school and kids can be the cruelest when it comes to someone who is different or not part of the popular crowd. I knowyou only said I imagine, but please, if you ever have to deal with a child who has been cruel, dont assume the parent will be the same way. when a child gets older any , say, into the middle schoolto high school crowd, there is peer pressure to fit in, and a want to be popular. Sometimes with out even thinking, they will pick on the kid that is different so they will seem cool to the already popular kids. As horrible as that is, thats what happens.
Parents dont have that 'peer pressure' so to speak and I think you will often find that they are horrified by their childs actions when it comes to hurting another just to be cool.

Posted on: Mon, 09/06/2004 - 3:35am
pgrubbs's picture
Joined: 10/27/2003 - 09:00

I like everyone to know about my DDs PA but we aren't in middle school yet. Not much bullying at 4. In any event, one issue I have seen is she gets known as "the peanut girl" by other families and chidlren and it takes a while for people to get to know her as a cool kid with PA.


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