Peanut Free class request

Posted on: Mon, 11/10/2014 - 10:38am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

Just moved to a new school district. Previous district provided a peanut free classroom and several other accommodations with no problem, it was not a peanut free school. I contacted the new school two weeks ago to give them a heads up about my registering her and that she had a severe life threatening peanut allergy. They agreed to meet with me but neglected to inform me that they do not have any peanut free classrooms. Two weeks later when I register her they tell me they have no peanut free classrooms nor do they intend to make one for her. They actually said it would be against the law to tell parents they could not send peanut products for in class snack. They also said whenever there is a classroom celebration my child can sit in the nurses office? I told them we would be applying for a 504 and they said that is not what 504s are for... We even submitted a doctors note saying my child needed a peanut free class. Just curious if others have had to advocate for this and how they went about it and if they have a 504.
Thanks

Posted on: Sat, 11/15/2014 - 11:44am
kathleenc1027's picture
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Joined: 11/15/2014 - 18:39

If this is in the US, you are within your lawful rights to not only have a 504 outlining your child's needs with the food allergy, the school HAS to comply by making accommodations. As a teacher and a mother of a child with a severe peanut allergy, I am aware of what needs to be done to keep children safe in school. The doctor's note should be enough--if the principal and nurse won't accommodate you, go to the superintendent. Good luck!

Posted on: Sat, 11/15/2014 - 12:12pm
mom1995's picture
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Joined: 11/09/2004 - 09:00

I am so sorry for your daughter. First of all if you are in the US then you are correct. So EVERY school dist has a 504 Coordinator. Their sole role is to ensure the School Dist is protected legally. That is who you need to contact. Sounds like you will have a battle ahead of you with the school if that was their initial response. You can also call an advocacy group. They are usually called (name ) Center for Independent Living. They specialize in helping people with mental or physical disabilities but are a GREAT source of guidance. They can point you to a lawyer that specializes in ADA laws. Normally I would say find information in the internet that you can share with the school about the laws and the manor in which your daughter is protected but I would venture to say they think they know best and you would be wasting your time. You can also find out which Office of Civil Rights has jurisdiction over you area and file a complaint with them. The thing is ISD's receive Federal Funding and as a result if they are fond to be violating Federal Law (ADA) then they risk some or all their funding. It is all about the money so when you start talking about how it will cost them or what they might lose suddenly they are willing to do the right thing. You also have every right to require things that could cost them money too. Things like an aide for your daughter to go with her to every class and ensure all surfaces are clean. Or maybe that they have to clean (per medical guidelines) all surfaces that your daughter would have contact with. I could go on and on....
As a mother who had to fight often with various ISD's and filed a complaint with the OCR on one of them ..... Sometimes you have to be the momma bear and scare the poop out of them for it to all go well. Lastly once you get your 504 and you will, don't think they won't test your resolve or how far they can push. You will have to stop by randomly and be sure your daughter feels empowered to stand up for herself at all costs. Feel free to come back often and ask there are such great folks on here with knowledge to share.

Posted on: Sat, 11/15/2014 - 9:31pm
Mrsdocrse's picture
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Joined: 01/16/2007 - 09:00

I agree with previous posters... The 504 is a mandated by law. They do have to comply with it. However, every 504 is different and I do not think they HAVE to make the classroom peanut free but they can't exclude the child from activities because of the disability. They do have to make some accommodation for that child. Like a peanut free table and have protocol in place for hand washing. You didn't say how old your child is but obviously the younger ones need more accommodations than older kids...
Try to approach it in a positive manner ..... you will get a lot more of what you want. But, I would get the school nurse and the superintendent involved if the principal dismissed you that quickly.
Good Luck!

Posted on: Mon, 12/08/2014 - 2:11pm
SeanH's picture
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Joined: 12/08/2014 - 20:56

Hello, I was confused by this post because people were talking about the "504" and there was really no reference to what it was. So I looked it up and it is for children with disabilities, so that they are not excluded from actives and education. Ok, so now I understand that. So, if I am to understand this correctly, you are trying to say that you daughter is disabled because she has an allergy to peanuts. I don't think that the "504" really fits. I don't think that an allergy is a disability. I don't think she can claim "disabled" and get disability checks because of her allergy. I had sever eczema from age 5 to 43 and even though I ended up in the hospital twice because it was so sever, I would never have considered myself disabled. Before you cry, but my daughter has an allergy . . . . I found out this year that I am (age 43) gluten intolerant and have been most of my life and it turns out that the gluten has been causing my eczema my entire life. So my issue was an allergy as well. I think a peanut free classroom is over the top. Because then we would need a gluten free classroom as well, no dairy, no soy, no tree nuts, no perfumes, etc. Why don't you just home school?

Posted on: Tue, 12/09/2014 - 4:25am
mom1995's picture
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Joined: 11/09/2004 - 09:00

So section 504 of the ADA states that a disability is anything that limits or effects a vital life function. To that I would say that breathing is a vital life function. In my daughters case and the serveness of her allergy she was covered.
Comparing your gluten intolerance to an allergy that will result in someone not being able to breathe is not an equal assessment. I don't think if you were to touch something with gluten residue on it that you would die. That is a very real possibility for people like my daughter.
So the 504 is what pretects kids and gives them the same right as others to receive a public education that my tax dollars pay for too. There is no burden in advoiding the consumption of nuts at school. It hurts no one to remove it. So to say other wise is false. All that is being asked is you remove something that could kill a kid. Much like removing guns. But maybe you think it would okay for guns to be at school too.

Posted on: Tue, 12/09/2014 - 4:47am
SeanH's picture
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Joined: 12/08/2014 - 20:56

Wow, that was rude. Thank you for minimizing my pain and suffering for the last 37 years. Thank you for equating my opinion with having guns in school. Your logic a=a=a is the same kind of tactics that the media uses to put fear into people. It is not a rational communication trying to find a solution. Ok, in a nutshell, pun intended, your child has a really bad allergy that can cause her death. You love your daughter very much and that is evident by the lengths you are willing to go to keep her safe, that is to be commended. I imagine you have very smart child, meaning that she does not have down syndrome or some other mental disability. Your daughter can be taught to "Just say no" to peanuts. There is no need to deprive everybody else of peanuts because one person cannot have them. If your daughter is special and needs to be put into a bubble, ok. But I don't think it is ok to put everybody else into your child's bubble. I think it would be great to educate the class about your daughter's allergy and bring awareness to the issue. To me this is kind of like those kid shaped SLOW signs. Instead of teaching the children not to play in the street, people put up these SLOW signs to try to change the rest of the worlds driving habits.

Posted on: Tue, 12/09/2014 - 6:52am
mom1995's picture
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Joined: 11/09/2004 - 09:00

I did not minimize anything. We have a family with one of everyone of those allergies. The misconception continues to be that nut allergies are just allergies. They truely are far more serious then that. To say it is depriving anyone of anything is beyond silly. There are rules everywhere that don't allow you to do certain things in certain places. So don't make it more then it is. There was a time in society that we all worked towards the same goals. We cared for our Childs classmates the same as we cared for our own child.

Posted on: Wed, 12/10/2014 - 4:34am
SeanH's picture
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Joined: 12/08/2014 - 20:56

There was no misconception about nut allergies, not sure where you got that., it wasn't part of my comment. The allergen does not determine the severity of the allergy. There are people with mild peanut allergies and severe, same with celiac disease, some people get a little itchy and some people lose chunks of intestine and bleed out their butt. So if you have one of every allergy in your house hold, I would suggest you start eating more raw food, rich in enzymes and that should help all of the allergies in your house, not necessarily cure, but minimize symptoms. All those allergies, are you going to have each of those things removed from the class room? It starts with peanuts, then wheat, then dairy, then tree nuts, then soy, then etc. etc. etc. And then you are still going to try to say,"To say it is depriving anyone of anything is beyond silly." It is silly, teach your child, inform the teacher but to change everybody else is folly. And to make more rules just because, as you said'"There are rules everywhere that don't allow you to do certain things in certain places." That is not a logical argument for more rules.
I don't understand why you keep going off topic and talking about guns, and saying things like"So don't make it more then it is. There was a time in society that we all worked towards the same goals." When was that? Maybe 40-50 years ago, so way way back before things like the ADA or 504? "So don't make it more then it is."

Posted on: Mon, 03/09/2015 - 8:33am
Reneev123's picture
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Joined: 07/21/2014 - 21:23

This is a comment to the person who said,504 are not for peanut allergy children.That a peanut allergie is not a disability. You compairing your allergies to a peanut allergie are not the same! You get diarreha and eczema. Our children who touch or eat peanuts, blood pressure drop, do to shock! As they are throwing up choking on their own vomit,because they fainted. Their throats are closing,where eventually they sufficate to death as thier organs shut down. If an Epi Pen is not given to them they die. Don't You ever compare your diarreah and eczema to that! How dare you just tell her to homeschool, and that it is not a disability. People like you, are the ones that end up hurting peanut kids. There are sooooo many people like You. That is why I will homeschool my son!!! It is 100% a disabilty,because of stupid people who don"t care! As a mother I have to protect my son from peanuts,but most of all from people who dont believe in the peanut allergies. This is a life threating Allergie. Peolpe like You don't want to be bothered with us, just home school..... If that is what us mothers who have children with peanut allergies have to deal with. Then we should get disabilty for our young kids,to help with home school and tutors.

Posted on: Mon, 03/09/2015 - 9:03am
Reneev123's picture
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Joined: 07/21/2014 - 21:23

No You are rude and stupid! You for sure have to be the obese mom, that is lazy and feeds her child skippy every day. No child should eat peanut butter,unless it is natural peanut butter with out any sugar. Children don't even like natural peanut butter. My son almost died by touching a marker with peanut butter oil on it.The oil was not visible to anyones eyes. A child ate peanut butter and jelly did not wash her hands,then used the marker. My son, went to color picked up the marker. He immediatly got itchy and rubbed his nose and eyes. The peaunt oil, not visible to any ones eyes at the moment. Penatrated through his eye tissue. He was rushed to the hospital and stayed a week,it was so bad. Im really sorry You hate peaunt allergy kids! It's probably beause your Mommy did not care enough about You to research why You had Diarreah and eczema. You see, we are just good Mommy's!!! You are why Peanut allergies need to be declaired a disability in our school aged children.

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