School

Posted on: Tue, 05/30/2000 - 2:04pm
Horseluver's picture
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Joined: 05/30/2000 - 09:00

Hi I have a pa,asthma,seafood allergy, and
atopic dermatitis.I,m a ten year old girl.
I hate having these allergys!I've been
homeschooling for three years, and i am
going back for fifth grade.I can't wait, but
I am kind of scared!Does anyone have any tips
for making it easier?
-Katherine

Posted on: Wed, 05/31/2000 - 3:49am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

Oh, Katherine, I just read your posting. My son is 4 years old so it is a lot different for him. Let me think about it and get back to you - that's a definite.
Cindy Spowart Cook
e-mail at [email]ron.cook@sympatico.ca[/email]

Posted on: Wed, 05/31/2000 - 4:02am
Horseluver's picture
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Joined: 05/30/2000 - 09:00

Quote:Originally posted by Cindy Spowart Cook:
[b]Oh, Katherine, I just read your posting. My son is 4 years old so it is a lot different for him. Let me think about it and get back to you - that's a definite.
Cindy Spowart Cook
e-mail at [email]ron.cook@sympatico.ca[/email][/b]
Thanks!!!!!

Posted on: Wed, 05/31/2000 - 2:58pm
rilira's picture
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Joined: 11/11/1999 - 09:00

Katherine-
I think just asking for help is a great first step. I would say be real aware of what the food rules your family has set up for you. Don't give into peer pressure. Remember always have your epi with you. Be sure your teacher and close friends know what to do if you are having a reaction.
Are you able to go to the school to look around and get used to the setting? Try to meet some kids who already are in the school to be friends with. Have fun and use being scared to be safe but don't be too afraid and miss out on the fun stuff.

Posted on: Thu, 06/01/2000 - 1:49am
Horseluver's picture
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Joined: 05/30/2000 - 09:00

Thanks so much. I will allways have my epi
with me. I will try not to be too scard.
-Katherine

Posted on: Fri, 06/02/2000 - 1:14pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

Katherine, I'm so sorry, I had wanted to respond more quickly to your posting. I went back in (I hadn't bookmarked it) and I couldn't find you so I had them search the site for you and got your original posting back up. I guess I have a few questions for you too.
You said that you had been homeschooled for the last three years. That means that you went to grade 1 at public school? Did you go
to Junior and Senior Kindergarten too? Why was it decided that you should be homeschooled, can you remember? And now, why
are you going back into the school system? I have noticed that a lot of children with PA end up being homeschooled. Oh, there are so many things. First, do you know if the school you will be going to has any "peanut free" policies in place? If not, does the local school board? This would probably be something your parents could check out. The local school board should have a policy in place which they will, in turn, have to give to the school you are attending. Is your peanut allergy severe, i.e., you should be in a "peanut free" environment? The school should have medical forms to send home to your parents to fill out. My son is required to have two epipens at school, one he wears on a fanny pack and one is kept close to his teacher. Do you have a MedicAlert bracelet?
My son also has asthma and I have left inhalers at the school, both for if he needs them for his asthma itself and also if he goes into anaphylactic shock due to the peanut allergy and needs some of the reliever puffer (to help him breathe). Do you have any friends that are already going to this school? At 10, you're probably pretty aware of what you can and cannot eat. Will you be staying at school for lunch or coming home?
Do you live fairly close to the school? Is part of your nervousness nothing to do with any of your allergies but just the whole social aspect of it? Are your parents able to find out if there are any other children with PA in the school? There will be a lot of them with asthma, no doubt. When you were homeschooled were there other children that were with you? What's happening with them?
At any rate, I really wanted you not to be scared. I can only respond as the parent of a child who has PA and asthma and it is pretty scary for me and perhaps as he gets older it will be scary for him too, but you're probably so aware of what is okay and not okay that you'll be fine. Nervousness about going into the whole social scene of it all is a different thing though. Do you have a large group of friends now? At any rate, enough for now. I'm sorry I lost your original post and took so long to reply. My heart just aches for you but I know you will be okay. Do you know how to administer the epipen? When was your last reaction where it had to be used? Are you able to administer it to yourself (I have read that even if you know how, the shock is so severe that you're unable to do it). Oh, also, I know that I had to provide a picture of my son to the school to put up in common areas so that all of the teachers know who he is. I'm also very fortunate that he has a great teacher. I've also found that if you arm the school with a lot of information about the allergy especially if they don't have any other children that are PA, it really helps.
Chris likes us to stay on-line here, but you can also e-mail me at [email]ron.cook@sympatico.ca[/email]
It's actually good to stay on-line because I see you're getting a lot of support and will continue to do so even as you go back to school.
------------------

Posted on: Fri, 06/02/2000 - 3:36pm
Horseluver's picture
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Joined: 05/30/2000 - 09:00

Hello Cindy. Thank you so much for answering Katherine (my daughter). I found this sight a few days ago and thought it might help both of us to talk about how we are feeling. She said she would answer your questions, but I thought I would answer some also. I am really the one who is terrified about her going back to school. She is much more confident than I am, but it is still scary for her. Not the social aspect, but the peanuts everywhere. I briefly spoke with the school nurse and she was very nice, however I know they have a policy of not letting the kids carry their meds with them. I may be in for a fight, but she WILL carry 2 epi pens with her at all times! She went to a private K and 1st grade where this was no problem. I also got a job teaching at this same school and everything worked fine. I have considered us going back, but I have 4 children and it was difficult and expensive.The environment was great. The kids protected her, watching out to see that she was never by anyone that ate pb. It was almost comical at times. We were lucky to have the same lunch period so I watched her also, but I would find myself upset when I saw someone eating pb. Each day during lunch I would go clean the bathroom where I thought any child might leave traces. You would not believe how that stuff ends up on faces, hands, lunch bags,ect! Anyway, after 3 years of homeschooling (because of the allergy) she really wants to go to public school.I told her she coul go, but I am having second thoughts. I guess there comes a time when we have to let them go and pray we have taught them the right things. I know she is very careful and mature. I am so proud of her. She wants to be an allergy doctor and help find a cure for this nightmare. I pray constantly that one of the studies presently being conducted will be available in the near future. I am sorry to go on and on like this, but I guess you know that people just do not understand. I sure wish we had a support group here. It is so great to read all these posts from people with the same anxieties. Sometimes I feel so isolated. People just don't get it. Well, I guess I should go. I wanted to answer your questions, but I think I forgot half of them. Sorry to ramble on, but it is very cathartic.
Michelle

Posted on: Sat, 06/03/2000 - 4:39pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

Michelle, at least remembered the site so I could check back in to see if any reply. At any rate, I have a migraine right now that will not leave and I cannot sleep but also cannot answer properly. When my husband read my last posting to Katherine he said that for him it was very confusing to read. I have quite a few thoughts though to share with both of you and hope you welcome this. I'm assuming that you live in America. I live in
Canada (Ontario) and I'm not sure if law is different in the two lands regarding PA and schools. I also had some information from the local school board here at the beginning of the last school year but I gave it to another parent who had to present it to the Catholic school board to have them implement a "peanut free" environment for his child. So, I don't have that. I'm wondering if I should request another copy of it. I know that it's like a 64 page document or something and this is a very small school board compared to one for Toronto. At any rate, I do tend to babble. I want you to know that I'm very concerned for both of you and want to keep discussing. I'm also new to the board, having only discovered the site last week. I was so pleased because I have been looking for ANY contact with another parent with a PA child. I finally received this week also a list of three penpals through Today's Parent Magazine, but I really have been wanting to be in touch with people since my son was diagnosed. Anyway, I am sorry to ramble. I know that you will get flagged in your e-mail that you did receive a reponse. Please know that I'm thinking of you and Katherine and will try to gather my thoughts in a less confusing manner to address what was left unanswered from my last posting and what I wanted to respond to in your reply. I hope all is well
Cindy Spowart Cook
e-mail at [email]ron.cook@sympatico.ca[/email]

Posted on: Sun, 06/04/2000 - 1:20pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

Michelle - check out on this site - Legislation, and then Allowing our Children to have their meds. See if it has any information regarding where you live. You could probably also contact Chris to get further information. Carrying her epipen is an essential for Katherine. I don't even know if we have such law against carrying meds here. I'm still not well, but promise to respond to your earlier posting later in a more clear fashion re questions, etc. And, we have a couple of months to get the school issue dealt with anyway. I hope you both had a good day.

Posted on: Mon, 06/05/2000 - 4:31am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

Katherine/Michelle - I've been through the discussion so far and I think I have my questions and thoughts in a more coherent manner for both of you.
1. Do you have information to give to the school regarding the allergy and what should be done in case of a reaction? This should be given to the nurse, principal, vice principal and teacher.
2. How many grades does the school go up to?
3. Why, because of the PA, did you decide to
homeschool? You simply did not feel safe with what was offered by the public school system?
4. Do you know if the school you will be going to has any "peanut free" policies in place?
5. If not, does the local school board?
6. Is you PA severe, i.e., you should be in a "peanut free" environment?
7. Does the school have medical forms to send home to your parents?
8. Do you have a MedicAlert bracelet?
9. What can you do to be able to carry your
epipens (Michelle, see Legislature part I mentioned in an earlier posting)?
10. Do you have to carry your asthma meds with you too?
11. Do you have any friends that are already going to this school? I'm wondering if you could set up a buddy system thing.
12. Will you be staying at school for lunch or coming home?
13. Does the school cafeteria have a peanut free zone if you are staying at school for lunch?
14. Are there any other children with PA in the school?
15. When you were homeschooled were there any other children that were with you?
16. Do you know how to administer the epipen?
17. When was your last reaction where it had to be used?
18. Are you able to administer it to yourself?
19. You are actually fortunate to have a school nurse, we don't have them here.
20. Michelle, do you want me to request the 64 page document put out by my school board?
I completely understand both of your fears, etc. It's a very scary situation simply because it is deadly.
21. Oh, how bad is your asthma?
Anyway, when you get a chance, please respond and I'd be glad to work on this with you throughout the summer before school starts as I'm sure others who see your posting will be.
Michelle, I've found that this site has actually become my support group because its a lot easier than leaving the house and I've had such positive response.
Looking forward to hearing from you,
Cindy Spowart Cook
e-mail at [email]ron.cook@sympatico.ca[/email]
------------------

Posted on: Tue, 06/06/2000 - 12:11am
MaryLynn's picture
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Joined: 06/25/1999 - 09:00

Katherine and Michelle,
My daughter is currently in a public kindergarten and next year she will be going into the first grade. Our school system has a policy that children in third grade and up are allowed to carry rescue medications (ie Epi pens and inhalers ) as long as they have a note from their doctor saying the child knows how to properly administer the medication.
When she started school, I got in contact with the child study team and discussed the severity of her allergy. With out any special plan, we worked out special seating on the bus, training for the drivers on how to id a reaction and to ensure that the seats are cleaned before she gets on the bus, training for the staff in her school and special seating at lunch.
We have had an incidence free year, but she was sent home twice for excessive coughing, both times it was an excellent catch by the staff as she was developing croup one time and bronchitis the next.
I am even trying to figure out a gift to leave in the office for the staff to thank them for a great year.

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