In Nebraska, the Lincoln Public Schools committee passed a food allergy policy that covers all of the schools under the school board's wing, eliminating the previous school-by-school policy that had created gaps in coverage and options for the district.
The new policy covers how schools must handle situations surrounding students with life-threatening allergies and sets out responsibilities for staff, students with allergies, those students' parents, and other students around them. The policies will be distributed and published alongside other school policies.
Food allergy mom advocates change
Advocate and doctor Karla Lester spoke to the school board about the problem. Both of her children have life-threatening food allergies, including a
, and have been put in dangerous situations at school because teachers did not have clear guidelines for handling allergies. One child's teacher did not even know the child had allergies.
The Lincoln Public Schools board says there are 653 students in their schools who are registered with nurses or cafeterias as having allergies. Nationally, there are about 200 deaths a year from severe allergic reactions in the U.S.