If the schools nurse was not there, would you let your child attend school?

Posted on: Wed, 08/04/2004 - 6:10am
MQriley2's picture
Joined: 05/25/2004 - 09:00

Okay, the school year starts tomorrow. I have had many meetings with my school, whom I must say is doing great, and I have been reviewing my 504 plan. I was asked a question by the principal because it IS in my 504 and I wanted to know what you would do.

I will make it shorter, but my 504 states: If the school nurse is absent or leaves as well as his teacher, I have the right to pull my DS from school and keep him home until they return without penalization for his absences.

Now, at the time this made sense to me. The subs for the nurse are just subs..teachers..no different than you and me. They may not have ANY knowlege of allergys or epi-pen. But, my teacher is trained and many of the school staff that is associated with my DS is trained about his allergy and his epi-pen. I asked the teacher if SHE felt comfortable having my DS there without a nurse and she said..well, it is the epi and then 911 right?

Now, this is correct, but what if she questions if he is having a small reaction that may not need the epi..I mean..what do you do? The nearest hospital is atleast 15 to 20 minutes away from our school. I told the principle I would have to think about that. She said that she would have the subs for the teachers trained, but I feel that they would be more prone to "accidents" because they are not in our peanut/treenut free zone every day.


Renee asthma/EnA
Quinton: PA/TNA/Soy/EnA/Severe Asthma/whole egg/onion/cocoa bean/chicken/turkey/string beans/potato
Mykiaja: EnA/asthma
Taylor: EnA/asthma

Posted on: Wed, 08/04/2004 - 11:13am
momma2boys's picture
Joined: 03/14/2003 - 09:00

My son does go to school when the nurse is not there. Sometimes they have sub. nurses, but he also has an aide who carries his meds. and the whole school is trained to use epi.

Posted on: Wed, 08/04/2004 - 12:53pm
Renee111064's picture
Joined: 07/05/2001 - 09:00

in our schools in Pennsylvania, our nurses are only there part time. I do have an aide for my son who has been trained on how to use the epi-pen.
If I had a dollar for every time my son's aide, teachers, or the school nurse wasn't in the school on a particular (he is going to 3rd grade) day, I'd be making the teachers salary by now.
My son has not had any reactions that he has needed the epi-pen. Not ever. Thank God.
Does your school have a full time nurse? I know none of our 5 elementary schools do not, nor will they ever.
You must do what you feel is best for your child. I'm sure your comfort zone may ease up with each day that your child is in school. I know at first I was like a maniac every day. I've settled down since then and take each day one at a time.
best wishes,

Posted on: Wed, 08/04/2004 - 1:24pm
synthia's picture
Joined: 10/05/2002 - 09:00

Renee Thank you!!
To answer the ? as of this stage of the game my gut says [b]NO[/b]
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Posted on: Wed, 08/04/2004 - 7:47pm
MQriley2's picture
Joined: 05/25/2004 - 09:00

Thank you for all your posts. Unfortunately, my son does not have an aide and that is not possible in this school. The nurse is full-time and is not gone a lot, but can be.
As far as the teacher, she may be out a lot for many things and I have not decided what I am going to do about those days.

Posted on: Wed, 08/04/2004 - 9:59pm
Donni's picture
Joined: 11/06/2000 - 09:00

I experienced this situation last December. The full-time nurse at my son's school took a leave of absence which lasted about 3 weeks. A substitute nurse was not always there.
I did not take my son (5) out of school because the entire school staff had been trained on the use of an Epi-Pen, a procedure was in place should the teacher be absent (usually the same substitute who was experienced or something similiar), and the principal really made taking care of the kids with health issues a priority. I wasn't totally comfortable but I did not want my son to feel anxious, unsafe, or insecure.
In Maryland, not all schools have nurses, especially full-time nurses. Substitute nurses are also in demand. Thus, it's really important to have other staff members trained in First Aid, etc. A backup to the nurse never hurts either--the nurse may be busy with another life-threatening situation and the secretary just might be the one to administer the Epi-Pen.

Posted on: Thu, 08/05/2004 - 1:02am
Claire's picture
Joined: 04/19/2000 - 09:00

MQriley2, In first grade Christopher had a bad reaction. His first at school, He was accused of faking by a lady that works in the reading room. Then finally the main teacher let him go to the nurse. The nurse as it turned out was not in the building and a lady"mother" sat in for the day. She called me and never gave him epinephrine or called recue squad or anything. he was one sick boy.
The ER doctor actually got my son better and proceded to call and chew the principal out and the staff for not showing enough concern for our son.
From that day on they had their wake up call and respected Chris.
I also had taught Chris that if for some reason this ever happened again he was to scream and yell for help and get to a phone by himself and dial 911. He was wondering what if he got in trouble. We explained he would not get into trouble because we would have the teachers rearend before that point.
He was then very comfortable knowing we gave him permission to be as rude as he would need to be to save himself.
Sometimes children act more respectable than the adult in charge.
I myself would not want Chris in school without the school nurse for many reasons that have occured over the years.
She knows him and is excellent with him.
One more year of this thank goodness.
Good luck Claire

Posted on: Thu, 08/05/2004 - 1:13am
synthia's picture
Joined: 10/05/2002 - 09:00

Hi Claire
[b]I also had taught Chris that if for some reason this ever happened again he was to scream and yell for help and get to a phone by himself and dial 911. He was wondering what if he got in trouble. We explained he would not get into trouble because we would have the teachers rearend before that point.[/b]
This is what we have told our 8 year old in the event she see's her little sister having trouble (re Peanut allergy)in the school setting.
Love this site

Posted on: Thu, 08/05/2004 - 5:02am
California Mom's picture
Joined: 07/14/2000 - 09:00

My dd has never had a full time nurse at school, so I have had to rely on the teacher and office staff to do the right thing if necessary. Fortunately my dd has never had a reaction at school.
Good luck. I have found that it does get easier and less scary as time goes on and your child remains (hopefully!) safe at school.
Trust your instincts.
[img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img] Miriam

Posted on: Fri, 08/06/2004 - 4:29am
CalebsMom's picture
Joined: 02/03/2004 - 09:00

My Peanut/Tree Nut son Caleb starts Kindergarten in 3 weeks. We have no nurse on site. When I spoke with the principal at the end of last year, he said, "It's our policy to wait until the child passes out before we administer the epi-pen." I about fainted. He was confusing diabetic medicine with epi-pen. We've made progress since then and I'm due to go in and meet with him again to make sure everything is in order. But I am nervous. I just hope that all these adults have enough sense to recognize a reaction when they see one. What would have happened if I had just sat around thinking he'd get better on his own the first time he reacted to peanutbutter? I just wish one employee at that school had an allergy child. Sure would change the way they see things for the rest of us parents. Thanks for listening.

Posted on: Fri, 08/06/2004 - 5:47am
synthia's picture
Joined: 10/05/2002 - 09:00

CalebsMom.I hope you don't mind I did a search and came up with this (so far)!
I will see if I can do more over the weekend.
Educational Rights
Parents and Students
Section 380.10 of the Revised School Code establishes the role of the parent as a partner in their child's education and ensures a positive educational setting:
"It is the natural, fundamental right of parents and legal guardians to determine and direct the care, teaching, and education of their children. The public schools of this state serve the needs of the pupils by cooperating with the pupil's parents and legal guardians to develop the pupil's intellectual capabilities and vocational skills in a safe and positive manner."
For further information on educational rights, please review the issue papers
written by the Government Services and Customer Services' staff.
Special Needs Services Information
Special Education Programs and Services are guaranteed to students with disabilities in accordance with the provisions of the
Federal Law, "Individuals with Disabilities Education Act," last amended in 1997 and implemented via Part B of the IDEA
Regulations. Closer to home, Michigan State law supports these federal requirements through the Michigan State School Code, PA
451 of 1976 as amended, and the Michigan Administrative Rules for Special Education. Please see Special Education Information for
Parents and Families
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