Wow, my school saga continues.....

Posted on: Tue, 03/20/2007 - 12:20am
chanda4's picture
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Joined: 12/14/2006 - 09:00

I guess I am just searching for a place to get this off my chest, so this may be a little more info then you care to hear. My school is the one with the divided parents, over seperating the hot lunch, cold lunch and peanut-free tables....last night I was confronted by 2 of the moms against the *segragation*.

They expressed their upset at the lunchroom changes, again focusing on how much their own kids hate it. This was 3mths ago....move on. But they kept refering to *their kids* don't like what I wrote to the local paper, *their kids* don't like not being able to sit where they want at lunch, *their kids* have allergies and don't ask for special treatment(that's the kicker, they compared my sons allergies with theirs...theirs ranging from cats, yeast, oats etc...). One thing they kept repeating over and over, is that I can't expect a community to make changes for one kid. I need to make my own changes, make my own arrangements, but really...leave the rest of them out of it. They were also commenting on the whole semi-pro basketball game event and reaction(where the school-sponsored event served 170 bags of peanuts....these were the moms in charge of all that.). They actually told me I should get a group of moms together and do something else(besides attendign the game with the rest of the school), this is my problem to deal with. Instead of upsetting the whole lunchroom, I should take my son home for lunch, this is my problem to deal with.

Then they compare me to their friend who son has peanut allergies and they don't ask for special accomadations, he sits at the regular lunch tables. They know to wipe the knife off before they dip it into the jelly for his sandwich....basically, I am a baslet case with too much time on my hands. The one boy(with yeast allergy) can't eat pizza, so when the class(4th grader) earns a pizza party he doesn't pitch a fit demanding something safe...he brings his own stuff(usually Subway sandwich??)....I just don't get it.

See what I mean, these people just don't get it and honestly, I am starting to not want to be associated with any of them. How can I live in this community with this much lack of compassion? I don't get it. I know what they were thinking, the ultimate solution to all these, keep him home. They didn't come out and say it, but after the keep him home for lunch comment, really "it's my own problem"...right??!! Why bother any of them with it....come on.

I stood there and listen to them for an hour and then last night I didn't sleep, all this was playing in my head. My 504 meeting is tomorrow....they have no idea how I am handling *my problem*.

Anyways...I can't even think straight anymore. I have to refocus on my meeting tomorrow and deal with this after. I just needed to unload(thanks)....

[img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

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Chanda(mother of 4)
Sidney-8 (beef and chocolate, grasses, molds, weeds, guinea pig & asthma)
Jake-6 (peanut, all tree nuts, eggs, trees, grasses, weeds, molds, cats, dogs, guinea pig & eczema & asthma)
Carson-3 1/2 (milk, soy, egg, beef and pork, cats, dog, guinea pig and EE)
Savannah-1 (milk and egg)

Posted on: Tue, 03/20/2007 - 1:23am
KatiesMom's picture
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Joined: 03/01/2000 - 09:00

That's when you tell them you won't compare what you do as a parent to what anyone else does as a parent. You are doing what you feel you need to do. Period. You don't need to apologize for doing what you feel is best for your child. The other parents can do what they feel is best for their child. All children are different and have different needs.

Posted on: Tue, 03/20/2007 - 2:19am
anonymous's picture
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Joined: 05/28/2009 - 16:42

chanda,
I'm sorry you were confronted - and I do mean *confronted* - about this. I probably would've been in tears... or the other extreme, visibly angry.
Everyone chooses to handle this thing differently, and I agree with what KatiesMom said.
That said, we have chosen from day one to handle this the best we can without affecting anyone else. Sure, I still get accused of it affecting other people, but I know in my heart of hearts, it's not that way.
I hope things start looking up for you soon.

Posted on: Tue, 03/20/2007 - 4:15am
PA-Mom's picture
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Joined: 09/18/2006 - 09:00

Sorry to hear about this experience. I had been in a similar position, hearing "can't THOSE KIDS go someplace else?" Some saying I should homeschool, which is a great option but our children do have a right to a free and public education...it is our choice to send to school or homeschool... not other parents.
Anyway, if someone asks a question because they want to learn more about it I'll educate. If someone has a complaint, I refer them to the school Principal. Our school sent information with our newsletter about the severity of food allergies, various facts, frequently asked questions, etc. Maybe if these parents had some facts from the school they would at least understand a little better.
It's obvious the parents could use some food allergy education if they are trying to compare 2 food allergic children and complain about your child's accomodations.
I'm sure they wouldn't be saying these things if it were their children with the food allergies. Hold your head up high and know that you are doing what you need to do to protect your child. Good luck and I hope your 504 meeting goes well.

Posted on: Tue, 03/20/2007 - 4:17am
TwokidsNJ's picture
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Joined: 05/28/2005 - 09:00

First of all, tell them they are BULLYING you and your school has an anti-bullying policy.
Second, tell them your child is protected by federal law and they are breaking the law by asking you to undo accomodations that are reasonably appropriate for him.
Third, ask them if they want to be the ones responsible for KILLING your child. Or another (and tell them FYI that a few kids have died from peanut butter "wiped off" knives instead of proper washing in hot temperatures to remove all residue).
Remember if it were their kids they'd be screaming the loudest the other way.
I'd report these people to the principal in your meeting tomorrow. Issue a memo that they are HARRASSING and BULLYING you, drop some lines about 504 and reasonable accomodations that are PRIVATE and none of their business, and that you want it to STOP and the only way it will is thru the leadership of the school saying something to them.

Posted on: Tue, 03/20/2007 - 5:58am
lreichpink's picture
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Joined: 03/19/2007 - 09:00

Ditto, TwoKidsNJ!!! Great response. I couldn't have said it better! Keep your chin up and good luck with your meeting!

Posted on: Tue, 03/20/2007 - 6:46am
Carefulmom's picture
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Joined: 01/03/2002 - 09:00

Interesting. I had a similar situation with a mom during the summer between 2nd and 3rd grade at a birthday party. Our kids had been in the same class in second grade. She confronted me at a birthday party when I went expecting to have fun. I was taken totally off guard. Fortunately, dd was nowhere nearby and did not hear it. She would have been devasted to overhear something like that. This mom was not as over the line as what you experienced, but it made me feel just awful. In our school the gifted kids were always in a separate class from the regular kids starting third grade. It turned out both our kids were identified gifted and have now been in every class together even now in middle school. Suprisingly, this mom and I are now very amicable. We have been to each other`s houses, and we call each other for the homework if her child or mine are out sick, we hung out together on the field trips and sat on the bus together. I am trying to remember exactly what made things turn around and I think it was really a couple of things. One was that the teachers presented the rules as their rules not my rules. For class parties, I made up the list of food to bring, but the teacher always presented it as her rule. For state testing, she would send home a note that I would be providing the snacks, but it was always presented as this is how the teacher wants it done. Also, this mom did not really understand the law. I did not get into detail and I`m sure she does not know what a 504 is, but I briefly told her that in fact the law requires the school to accomodate the allergies and to make it safe for dd. She did not know that. She thought the school was doing me a favor. It is hard to imagine with all the talk on this board about 504s, but if I did not have a pa child, I probably would not know much about disability law either.
I do think that the rules about the pa accomodations need to be presented to the other parents as how the school wants it done, not how Mrs. _____ wants it done. When notes went home about requesting not to bring pb on field trips, it always went home as a request from the teacher. Also, dd was never mentioned by name, although most knew who the pa child was.
About the fact that other parents having pa kids and not asking for certain accomodations, I just tell people that my child is so much more severe. I have no idea if it is true or not, but I find that usually stops people from telling me that so and so`s child does not need a peanut free table or whatever else.

Posted on: Tue, 03/20/2007 - 8:19am
joeybeth's picture
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Joined: 09/01/2006 - 09:00

do not entertain these women anymore by carrying on a conversation with them. they are never going to be satisfied anyway. i think one of the main reasons my kids have fared so well at school and my relationship with the staff and parents of other students has fared so well is that i was never put in a position to have to debate the issue with other parents. our school nurses and principals and cafeteria managers have made all the decisions and took it out of my hands. i don't even have any special accommodations like a 504 plan (not ever sure what that is, actually). i jsut have a school system that, so far, has been wonderful to work with.
my younger PA daughter is in 2nd grade and sits with the hot lunch kids on one half of the cafeteria (even when she brings her lunch from home) and the kids with lunchboxes always sit on the other half of the cafeteria. we have no need for peanut-free tables because our lunches are peanut and nut safe every day (with the exception of the cold lunch side...kids can bring what they want in their lunchboxes...and do).
personally, i think it has not only made my life easier and my kids' lives safer (and also the lives of any others with peanut and nut allergies and any to come in the future), but it has also made life less complicated for the staff at school.
anyhow...i would tell these twits to blow it out their you-know-whats and refer them to your school's staff if they have any further comments or questions.
for the record, no kids at our school seem to even notice that the lunchroom is divided up that way. they were just told where to sit one year and no questions were asked. period. school rules are school rules and it would be unfair for anyone to point out that the seating arrangement was any one child's "fault." seating arrangements like the one our school employs make several things easier. for one thing, the kids with lunch from home don't have to wait in line behind kids who are purchasing a tray...they get to sit down, eat and enjoy themselves right away. they are also dismissed a bit earlier (because they sit at the table nearest the exit from the cafeteria), which gives those who got a later start on their lunch more time to finish up. just makes sense.
women like the ones you are having problems with will come up with something else to whine about as soon as they are forced to move on to another topic. i honestly also doubt their kids even have any issue with the accommodations for your child - and if they do, it's only because they've heard their mothers running their mouths about it. kids are usually happy to help and adjust pretty fast to whatever they need to.
[This message has been edited by joeybeth (edited March 20, 2007).]
[This message has been edited by joeybeth (edited March 20, 2007).]

Posted on: Tue, 03/20/2007 - 8:32am
mistey's picture
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Joined: 01/18/2004 - 09:00

Wow. I don't even know what to say except sorry. And I hope it gets better.

Posted on: Tue, 03/20/2007 - 9:12am
cathlina's picture
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Joined: 06/29/2001 - 09:00

Don't let these people try and run over you.
What busy bodies!
Personally, I would have used some really naughty words right in their faces.

Posted on: Tue, 03/20/2007 - 1:23pm
Peanut Militia's picture
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Joined: 03/06/2007 - 09:00

Keep your chin up! WE will make a difference-if not for our kids then the next generation of peanut kids and probably one of their grandchildren. Kinda ironic huh?

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