Need Advice on 504

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Ok - I will try to make this short. Matthew has been at the same school for 4 and half years. I have never felt that I needed to implement the 504 plan for him. We have had great teacher support, etc. THIS year - we do not! All I really want out of this is to keep peanut products out of the classroom - classroom - not lunchroom!!!! This is not a huge request in my opinion. We seem to have parents that send whatever they want and then say that I should just take my son to another school???? HELLO!!??? Anyway - will the 504 plan allow me to make that request? I also want to know who is going to give him his injection if he is not able to? I have no emergency plan written down (again - it has not been needed - until this year) The teachers, nurse, students, etc. all know that Matt is even "airborne" allergic to nuts. He has gone home many times due to vomitting in the lunchroom, hallway, classroom, etc. Please tell me if I am out of line on the classroom request. I am using the defense that when it is in the classroom and Matt has to live with a stomachache and a headache everyday - that it will affect his grades. I am also afraid that they will say he makes very good grades ( all A's ) so they dont think it is a problem. Advice???

On Jan 15, 2002

Hi and welcome,

Please do a search on the board for 504 - you will get lots of info. Also, here in the schools topic just scroll down - you will find bunches on section 504 without even having to do a search.

Good Luck and stay safe

Sue in Sunny Arizona

[This message has been edited by Sue (edited January 15, 2002).]

On Jan 15, 2002

I haven't had to re-write our daughter's 504 yet, (only been in effect this school year)but I know it is not binding for the entire year. You should be allowed to meet monthly if needed and review it and if necessary, modify it. We have in our daughter's plan that a drill is done to be sure everyone knows, in the event of an emergency, who calls the nurse, 911, stays with my daughter, etc. I think you should have something about what takes place in case of an emergency included in the plan. You didn't mention if the plan states that his classroom be peanut-free. But in my opinion, I don't think it is out of line to call a meeting and say that a modification needs to be made, since the current plan is obviously not working. Your son is suffering needlessly. Good luck!

On Jan 16, 2002

If you son has airborne allergies and your son's teacher is not compliant with you in keeping out peanuts, I definitely would go to the principal or head teacher and request a meeting immidiately. If the teacher is not new at the school then she was probably aware of your son's allergy before he even started school this year.

I know my son is in kindergarten but every teacher in the school (23) know about his allergy and are aware. Some are very leary about him being in "their" classroom" some day but his teacher there is tells them all he is just your average "All American Boy" just with special needs.

I would read the 504's and NOW get one in place, your pricipal will be calling the 504 coordinator in your district to set up a meeting. Get the meeting ASAP! It is a matter of life or death if the teacher is not willing to cooperate with you. If my son was getting sick in school because a teacher refuses to keep the room safe for ALL of her children then the time is now to act! You also need a plan of action for your son's epi pen in school. If you need epi-pen trainers you can call Dey Labs and they will send out as many as you need. I have three in our school and one for myself to teach family and friends. The telephone number for the is 1-800-755-5560.

Good luck with your plan and please keep us informed as to what is happening with your 504. If you would like, let me know and I could send you a copy of my 504 plan that I have implemented in our school.

Best wishes,

Renee [img][/img]

[This message has been edited by Renee111064 (edited January 16, 2002).]

[This message has been edited by Renee111064 (edited January 16, 2002).]

On Feb 14, 2002

PLEASE HELP!! I had my sons 504 meeting today [img][/img] However, nothing was decided yet. The 504 co-ordinator is NOT on my side! We have three teachers throughout the day and they are all on my side?? We now are going to keep a chart (?) for two weeks to determine how this affects Matts "breathing"/"learning". I told them that Matt has headaches and stomach aches all the time due to exposure, but since he doesnt have poor grades or poor attendance - the Co-ordinator does not feel that this meets "a life threatening" condition under the 504 plan. I have apparently approached the entire situation wrong. What am I leaving out of my meeting for them to "get it"? Please advise before my next meeting.

On Feb 14, 2002

Had to jump in here. As a teacher and parent of a PA/TNA child I fought for a 504 and got my daughter the first 504 for a food allergy in a district of 8000.

If you are not comfortable having enough information and do not feel assertive enough to get it past this so called coordinator, ugh, then I suggest you get yourself a child advocate. Someone who knows the law regarding this. Even a letter head from a lawyer can help move things along.

It certainly does meet criteria for a 504. My dd suffered from stomach and headaches as well. my heart goes out to you and yours.

Feel free to look up my 504 under mamagaona


On Feb 15, 2002

Thank you! I will look at that as well. I always thought of myself as an assertive person - until now. I think part of the problem is that we have another child that is PA at the school and his mother is a teacher there and her son does not have a 504 in place. He is not airbonre allergic like mine is and I have tried to explain that - but without success. An advocate might be the way to go for me! I will give them their next meeting and see what they come up with - but then I think you might be on track here - I will contact our local child advocate office (we have several here) and see if they would be interested in taking our case. :-) I love this board - you guys are all so helpful!!!

[This message has been edited by n5vox (edited February 15, 2002).]

On Feb 15, 2002

Hi, Your situation is similar to ours. We are in the process of writing a 504 plan for our son. We just got eligibility end of Jan. Here is what I have learned. You need to know the 504 law. Print it out. [url=""][/url] Make copies of Parts A and Part D. It would also be great if your allergist would attend the meeting with you. That should have a lot of weight. Part D talks about application to public school. This is what I used to have my doctor focus on. Use colored ink to help doctor. They do not always know what the 504 language says. " (j) Handicapped person -- (1) Handicapped persons means any person who (i) has a physical or mental impairment which substantially limits one or more major life activities, (ii) has a record of such an impairment, or (iii) is regarded as having such an impairment. (2) As used in paragraph (j)(1) of this section, the phrase: (i) Physical or mental impairment means (A) any physiological disorder or condition, cosmetic disfigurement, or anatomical loss affecting one or more of the following body systems: neurological; musculoskeletal; special sense organs; respiratory, including speech organs; cardiovascular; reproductive, digestive, genito‑urinary; hemic and lymphatic; skin; and endocrine; or (B) any mental or psychological disorder, such as mental retardation, organic brain syndrome, emotional or mental illness, and specific learning disabilities. (ii) Major life activities means functions such as caring for one's self, performing manual tasks, walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning, and working. (iii) Has a record of such an impairment means has a history of, or has been misclassified as having, a mental or physical impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities. (iv) Is regarded as having an impairment means (A) has a physical or mental impairment that does not substantially limit major life activities but that is treated by a recipient as constituting such a limitation; (B) has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits major life activities only as a result of the attitudes of others toward such impairment; or (C) has none of the impairments defined in paragraph (j)(2)(i) of this section but is treated by a recipient as having such an impairment."

Then get the Section 504 Primer from Rhonda on her [url=""][/url] web site to explain what 504 is and how it relates to Food Allergy. [url=""][/url]

Does your allergist state your child is anaphylactically allergic to peanuts or are you carrying an epi-pen for nothing? Go and have a meeting with him to get him to state it in a letter to the schools. Have him list the major life systems affected by a reaction, the life threatening nature of a reaction. Have him explain anaphylaxis. This is the format of the letter Rhonda sent to her doctor. [url=""][/url]

Write a letter to your superintendent of schools. Requesting documents regarding the 504. A sample is: [url=""][/url]

The Office of Civil Rights (OCR) also considers allergy a "hidden disability" protected under Section 504 if all eligibility criteria are met. We loved this document

On Feb 16, 2002

I have been following this thread with great interest. We are currently meeting with our son's school - he may start K this Fall, IF we feel he will be safe there.

I'm so sorry and frustrated to hear that you (n5vox) are having so much trouble. I pretty much assumed that if PA met the requirements of the 504, then there should be no problem. I see that that is not the case all the time.

I checked out the Office of Civil Rights link that has been suggested here, and I have one question: It says, "For coverage under Section 504, an individual with handicaps must be "qualified" for service by the school or institution receiving ED funds." I take this to mean that it is up to the school to decide if PA is covered by the 504. Is this what it means?

I, and everyone else here, understand quite simply how PA does fit under the requirements of a "hidden disability" but, obviously, some others feel it does not. Is it open for opinion????

Thanks, Tammy

P.S. n5vox, hang in there - I'm certainly pulling for you!!!!

On Feb 17, 2002

See Main Discussion Board under "504 Coordinator Against me for having 504..."

The post by Nathan Walter's dad was extremely helpful to me and I'm printing it out to use during Kindergarten registration in anticipation of hearing that "Well we never had one before...He doesn't qualify for a 504..." routine.

On Feb 17, 2002

Hi Everyone, Excellent job and post Busymom! Thanks so much for posting all the steps.

Busymom and I have been working on this very same issue via e-mail. She worked *extremely hard* to educate the school staff and writing letters to secure the 504 Designation. As she said, she needed the support of her doctors to explain the severity of the situation in writing. And then she had to explain to them how Section 504 applied to food allergy. Ultimately, she had to go to the top = superintendents of schools = to get results. Busymom outlined precisely all the research that needs to be done.

Tammy, if the child is anphylactically allergic, and the major life activity of the ability to breath is affected, then yes, the child is eligible under Section 504.

On Feb 18, 2002

Hello all of you! You have been a big help here and now I have some additional information to look at. What my coordinator is trying to say is that since he doesnt come into contact with nuts EVERYDAY it does not necessarily limit his breathing to the extent that it is disabling? The teacher in the meeting that was on my side said that it only takes one time to be a problem and the coordinator just sat there and said that it just doesnt seem bad enough to qualify. I mean - who is she to decide? The allergist defintley said that he was anaphylactic - actually when they tested him - I made them dilute the liquid they uesd from 1/20 to 1/1000 and he still scored off the charts. I am going to slowly go back through each of your replies and research each helpful item that you gave me! Just to brag for a minute - (which actually will probably hurt my case) my PA son Matthew made it in the paper because he scored 100% in his Wordmaster challenge. There were only 439 kiddos national wide to score that high! OK - Sorry - back to the problem at hand (we just rarely hear the good things on this board) - thank you again for your references and I am going to check into each of them and I will keep you all posted on what happens here.

On Feb 18, 2002

Hi V5, The issue is this: his condition is a HIDDEN DISABILITY. That means that it is not readily apparent to others, all the time. Whether or not a peanut is in front of him at a particular moment, does not change the severity of his allergy and the fact that he IS ALLERGIC 100% of the TIME. Print off the OCR Hidden disability document that Busymom mentioned.

The fact that your child earned a high academic achievement *is* something to brag about

On Feb 18, 2002


I have not formally requested a 504 - I called the school and told them that I wanted to implement a 504 plan for Matt and they said that we would set up a meeting with me and his teachers and the school nurse and the 504 coordinator and that we would decide then if he qualified. I went to the meeting and that is when the coordinator made it very clear that she did not think he would qualify. We are going to meet again in about 2 weeks or so and go over a lot of other info. You are right tho - she is trying to say that it is not affecting his learning. That is where this took the wrong turn. I WILL get the letter from his allergist before the next meeting - and through other links I got here - I will take all of my info and I will NOT let her turn down my request. Thanks again for all of your support! Amy

On Feb 18, 2002


Sorry for butting in, but you mentioned ...the 504 coordinator said your child is not coming in contact with nuts EVERYDAY. Well I have to ask, is the classroom peanut free? Is the school peanut free? What type of sandwiches are brought from home--PB&J? I'm assuming the answers are no, no, maybe or yes, no, maybe. Which then would mean your child has a potential to come in contact with a deadly allergen everyday via shared items, doorknobs, faucets, you name it.

On Feb 20, 2002

Please feel free to but in anytime [img][/img] You are right - NO the classroom is not peanut free, they still serve PB&J through the cafateria lines a few days a month, and yes there are a few kids that eat PB&J EVERYDAY for lunch! I will explain this too. My meeting is the 3rd week of the March and I will let you guys know how it turns out. Thanks again for the support.