requesting a peanut aware class for the STAFF

Posted on: Sat, 01/03/2004 - 3:54pm
KarenH's picture
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Joined: 09/21/2002 - 09:00

Monday I go back to work. Way back in Sept I let the staff there know that I'm PA, but I'll admit that my comfort zone was much more lax then it should have been. One big reaction over the holiday, and the thought of sitting in a class filled with PB sandwhiches scares the you-know-what out of me.

I'm going to get tested for some proof to use if I need to, but I'm not sure if I should request a peanut aware classroom. There are already two in the school, so I know that they can do it. I am okay with not eating anything, but what bothers me is that sometimes there will be as many as 15 kids eating pb and getting it all over the desks, themselves, etc. I've been getting really bad sinus headaches every day after sitting with them at lunch, too. (a major symptom for me is sinus pain)

Any tips on how to approach this?

Posted on: Sat, 01/03/2004 - 11:54pm
MommaBear's picture
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Joined: 09/23/2002 - 09:00

Quote:Originally posted by KarenH:
[b]I'm going to get tested for some proof to use if I need to, but I'm not sure if I should request a peanut aware classroom. There are already two in the school, so I know that they can do it. I am okay with not eating anything, but what bothers me is that sometimes there will be as many as 15 kids eating pb and getting it all over the desks, themselves, etc. [/b]
I wouldn't be surprised if they didn't request the same "proof" from you as they might from students. Have you addressed your concerns with a qualified physician?
Do you have a list of requests/demands?
If you do, are there any items you are willing to "budge" on in that list? ie: "Freebies". (As well as things you will not compromise?)
Disclaimer: I am not offering advice in any manner or form.
Quote:Originally posted by KarenH:
[b] I've been getting really bad sinus headaches every day after sitting with them at lunch, too. (a major symptom for me is sinus pain)
[/b]
Have you seen this thread:
[url="http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/Forum7/HTML/001289.html"]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/Forum7/HTML/001289.html[/url]

Posted on: Sun, 01/04/2004 - 4:29am
KarenH's picture
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Joined: 09/21/2002 - 09:00

I'm not sure what sort of requests I should have. That's why I'm going to the doc, to get his take on the whole situation and to be tested.
My problem is that when I work with special needs students, many are not so careful about washing up, and they want to touch you a lot. Many are very messy eaters, and I am the one washing them up. (think of a 2 yo eating)
Add to that about 10 other kids eating nuts/pb in the class, and I'm nervous. I would prefer a nut aware class...but I can see the argument coming that I've survived this long without one so why now?
There are three things I simply will NOT do. One is the cooking program-recipes with nuts or peanuts, peanut butter (some years I've done cooking programs at the school) I'll do the other recipes though.
Another is any crafts with nuts/peanut butter, etc.
The third thing is that I am supposed to sit beside my student while she is eating (choking risk). If she and her group are eating pb (and in some cases ALL FIVE kids had pb sanwhiches) I choose to sit at a nearby table away from them, but still so I can view the student. I still get the sinus pain though.
The whole staff is already epi pen trained. There are two first aid people, I am one and the other is very good. The teacher I work with is awesome and would be helpful. I can regulate what I eat no problem. The reason I'm even contemplating this is that the last reaction I had was very very bad and it was only from a trace amount of peanut.
Yes MB I did see that thread...was there a specific part you were referring to? funny thing though...when I made ds a pb sandwhich at the beginning of Christmas holidays I had the same type of sinus pain. I haven't even TOUCHED the pb jar since, nor has ds had a sandwhich, and I haven't had one since.
[This message has been edited by KarenH (edited January 04, 2004).]

Posted on: Sun, 01/04/2004 - 4:54am
MommaBear's picture
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Joined: 09/23/2002 - 09:00

Quote:Originally posted by KarenH:
[b]
Yes MB I did see that thread...was there a specific part you were referring to? funny thing though...when I made ds a pb sandwhich at the beginning of Christmas holidays I had the same type of sinus pain. I haven't even TOUCHED the pb jar since, nor has ds had a sandwhich, and I haven't had one since.
[/b]
The "Quality of Life" part. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

Posted on: Mon, 01/05/2004 - 12:21pm
anonymous's picture
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Joined: 05/28/2009 - 16:42

Karen,
How did your day go?

Posted on: Mon, 01/05/2004 - 1:23pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

Karen, I was going to ask what age group you work with, but I forgot they were special needs kids, so age isn't necessarily a factor. I can completely understand your concern.
When I worked in the lunch room it was usually with grade 7/8 students. I admit working with younger kids eating does make me a bit nervous. If I had to do it daily, it would be more that a bit nervous.

Posted on: Tue, 01/06/2004 - 7:02am
KarenH's picture
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Joined: 09/21/2002 - 09:00

Yesterday was not a fun day. :P Not due to PA (well partly, I did have a reaction)
A co-worker heated some schezwan chicken in the microwave. Immediately I had a reaction, but I wasn't sure if it was just me being a hypochondriac (nerves and stuff) or a genuine reaction. I went to class (grade 2/3) and easily 1/3 of them were eating pb sandwhiches. I sat across the room. By then I had sinus pain, nausea, my throat hurt, and my chest felt like it had a knot in it. When I had my next break, after we went outside...I checked the package from the dinner thing my co-worker microwaved. It contained ground peanuts and peanut butter. I took an antihistimine and felt better about 35-45 min later.
The dinner I made yesterday was disgusting...ever try a new recipe and then hate it so much you wonder why you didn't just make something you know is good?
And then DS and I went to every store in town trying to find some snow boots because he out grew his. Why on earth do they only have runners and shorts in the stores now? Hellllo? We were getting reports that a snowstorm was going to hit, so we were out looking. We finally found some stuff, but it was late and I was cranky.
So today school was closed on account of snow. No reaction-and I wasn't anywhere near anyone eating pb either.
I've documented everything well and see the doc tomorrow. He will put me in touch with an allergist, but the wait might be awhile and I have to be in there....so yes I'm still quite nervous.

Posted on: Wed, 01/07/2004 - 3:36am
KarenH's picture
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Joined: 09/21/2002 - 09:00

I'm debating whether or not to go to the doctor...the schools were closed because of snow, but the roads actually look okay from here-just very very wet. It's raining and all has started to melt. Ick.
I talked to the union. What happens depends solely on what the doctor says. If he thinks that my allergy is "severe" enough (ie I can go into anaphylaxis being in the room with pb or peanuts) then I can "ask" for a peanut free school/classroom. It is not really something I can demand. There is NO POLICY ON ANAPHYLAXIS IN MY DISTRICT. However if the school is not willing to accomodate the union is proposing that I change schools to one down the road that is a peanut free school. I don't like this idea. Why should I give up my job and leave (even though I'd have the same hours/pay) over pb?
I don't think the school will have a problem, but I'm anxious now to be tested.
[This message has been edited by KarenH (edited January 07, 2004).]

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