preschool

Posted on: Wed, 01/14/2004 - 9:52pm
anonymous's picture
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Joined: 05/28/2009 - 16:42

Hello! My husband and I are now embarking on the search for a preschool for our pa son. I do not want to miss a thing so was wondering if anybody had any advice or a list of questions we should be sure to ask. We are lucky to have wonderful people taking care of him now. Preschool seems a bit nerve racking! ?Thanks for any advice!

Posted on: Wed, 01/14/2004 - 11:16pm
leers's picture
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Joined: 07/09/2001 - 09:00

Seeing that you are from Florida I am not sure what policies the preschools have but in Ontario, Canada they are really good keeping the classroom peanut free if there is a child with the allergy or any allergy for that matter. I worked in daycare for numerous years and I know that all allergies are posted in each classroom as well as the kitchen and no food from the outside is allowed in. In matter of fact my youngest is in preschool right now with a birthday coming up and if I want to have a cake for him I have to send in the ingredients and they make the cake there for me. I guess they fear cross-contamination. The cake mixes have to be certain brands as well.
Don't be afraid to ask lots of questions. If they are a good daycare they won't mind answering them. Like I said above, see if other allergies are posted around the school, make sure staff are knowledgable about how to use the epi-pen, ask where they store it (should be in a fanie-pack around the teacher's waist), and ask about what kind of materials they use for crafts. I know there is a forum on this site about unusual places to find peanuts because they list some craft supplies that are big NO-NO's. In fact I gave alot of information sheets that I printed off this site on how to detect an anphalatic shock (symptoms to look for) and the list of things that may trigger a reaction. They posted these sheets for me so it made the other parents aware as well. I hope this helps
Good luck....

Posted on: Thu, 01/15/2004 - 2:06pm
2Pies's picture
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Joined: 07/21/2003 - 09:00

Where are you in Florida? I am also in Florida and have been happy w/ DS's preschool. I am strict about what DS eats but am comfortable with him being around other children eating peanut products. (I know many people here wouldn't be happy with that.) DS has never had a reaction since he was first diagnosed. What is your comfort level?
Edited to add - I checked your profile and I'm guessing St. John's County - Jacksonville area? That isn't my part if the state so I couldn't give you specific info about any schools. I don't know of any schools that are completely nut-free. A friend's non PA DD is in a nut-free classroom at a different school, however. In my search for a preschool, I did find many kind, loving people who were eager to be educated about PA and have gone out of their way to help us.
[This message has been edited by 2Pies (edited January 16, 2004).]

Posted on: Thu, 01/15/2004 - 2:54pm
momjd's picture
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Joined: 02/24/2002 - 09:00

Day Care Resources
[url="http://www.aanma.org/childcare/"]http://www.aanma.org/childcare/[/url]
[url="http://www.foodallergy.org/school.html"]http://www.foodallergy.org/school.html[/url]
[url="http://www.foodallergy.org/childcarenomination/form.html"]http://www.foodallergy.org/childcarenomination/form.html[/url]
[url="http://www.aaaai.org/patients/just4kids/classroom_corner/default.stm"]http://www.aaaai.org/patients/just4kids/classroom_corner/default.stm[/url]
[url="http://www.ericfacility.net/ericdigests/ed389142.html"]http://www.ericfacility.net/ericdigests/ed389142.html[/url]
[url="http://www.504idea.org/504_q_a.html"]http://www.504idea.org/504_q_a.html[/url]
[url="http://www.foodallergyinitiative.org/"]http://www.foodallergyinitiative.org/[/url]
(see living with food allergies section-

Posted on: Wed, 01/21/2004 - 2:52am
anonymous's picture
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Joined: 05/28/2009 - 16:42

Thanks for the great advice aand links. I am in the Jax area. I have to admit my comfort level changes from time to time. Most of the time we try to avoid at all costs, but have been in situations where other children have been eating reeses cookies in the same house. I didn't freak, just had my son eat at a different location and wiped things down. Sometimes we are a little relaxed as he has not had a reaction since the initial one (knock on wood) and I know he has been in the presence of nuts, peanuts,etc. Is this normal for a parent's comfort level to wax and wain ?

Posted on: Wed, 01/21/2004 - 7:25am
2Pies's picture
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Joined: 07/21/2003 - 09:00

My comfort level doesn't really fluctuate but my tendency to worry does! DS will be in kindergarten next year at a much larger public school, and I'm a little concerned about what will happen, but we have gone four years without a reaction. Now when DS first went to preschool, I was a nervous wreck! Every time my cell phone rang, I thought it was the school calling about an emergency. DS was also embarassed about being "different" and got very upset whenever he had to have a different snack than the other children. I didn't want the teachers to go out of their way for my child - my philosophy is that he *is* different and will have to get used to doing things a little differently that other people. That being said, I always know what the snacks are in advance and if it is going to be something really gee-whiz than I bring in something special for him and enough extra to share. Also, the school does have parties and the parents are expected to sign up to bring in stuff - I always make sure I'm the one bringing in the dessert. The kids do tend to get candy at the parties, but they aren't allowed to eat it in class. When DS gets home, I just trade with him and give him stuff that's safe for him.
So, in summary, preschool has been a good experience for my little guy, especially socially. He is also learning to handle his allergy at a level that is appropriate for him. Good luck to you!

Posted on: Wed, 01/21/2004 - 11:07am
Shaylynsmom's picture
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Joined: 01/17/2004 - 09:00

My DD attends preschool at "Childrens World". Here they are a peanut/nut free facility, and I know they have locations in Illinois and Colorado. What about looking into those facilities?
Just make sure that where ever she is they have her medicine pack with them. My DD teacher has a medicine fanny pack that she wears when my DD is there. Makes me feel just a bit more relaxed to know it goes where she goes, including outside. If they are a peanut/nut free facility make sure that includes the ingredients in all the foods that they either prepare for them or buy already made in cans, especially the treats and desserts. Sometimes they will forget about cake mixes, cookie mixes, puddings, etc.
I am new to the food allergy world and I have not established a comfort level yet, I tend to lean toward paranoid most of the time, O.K. maybe just panicky! I know in time that will change. You know your comfort level better then anyone else.

Posted on: Thu, 01/22/2004 - 3:03am
anonymous's picture
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Joined: 05/28/2009 - 16:42

There is a cambridge prep school here that claims to be peanut free. Has anyone had experience with these schools?

Posted on: Sat, 09/30/2006 - 10:14am
3xy1PAinNH's picture
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Joined: 08/07/2006 - 09:00

iN A PREschool environment where your child does not yet have all the capabilities to protect himself or speak for himself or understand the seriousness of his allergies, I would demand that the allergic items NOT be used in the class. And I am NOT an extreme mom by any means when it comes to exposures for my PA son(ie, he does outside activities, goes to Fairs and places peanuts are present...as long as I AM THERE!).

Posted on: Tue, 10/03/2006 - 1:27am
pitterpat's picture
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Joined: 02/04/2006 - 09:00

My dd's teacher did this and carefully selected things dd could have. There is no reason that it can't be done so the teacher shouldn't care if you bring alternatives. She should understand the importance and can take her $2 box of Cheeze-itz home, right?
DD's teacher used
sweet - changed from m&ms to kissables
sour - changed from lemon heads to lemonade
salty - lays potato chip
bitter - tollhouse semi-sweet chips
I know I am blessed to have a super-caring and careful teacher. I hope yours is receptive!
Patty
------------------
Patty
mom to
Sara (7/02) allergic to pn, grass, trees
Julia (9/04) asthma and allergic to eggs? & nuts? (no testing, just reactions)

Posted on: Thu, 10/19/2006 - 3:08pm
hopechapel's picture
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Joined: 12/11/2005 - 09:00

Well, I think the problem is that the allergy requires vigilance and change and these teachers get impatient or they don't like giving up their old ways of doing things. It is our job to help them grow. Help this teacher know that there are other salty things in the world other than cheez-its.
I think you have to call her and compliment her alot -- tell her how much your son loves her class, yadda yadda. Then drop the bomb. Can you change from chhez its to saltines? You've already bought them. No prob. You'll buy them off her. Wow does son love preschool! She is just such a great teacher..
This wasnt my tactic. I just told my teacher that my son says she always yells at him. Now she's buying huumus without going through me first.

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