Secretsofmommyhood

How an Allergy Mom Handles Back to School Time

Posted on: August 22, 2016

 

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It’s hard to believe that my son started Kindergarten last week! The summer really flew by.

All his school supplies were purchased and new clothes bought. He has a brand new Star Wars backpack that he’s excited to use and we had a great time meeting his teacher at Open House.

I wish that was all I had to do to prep for school; purchase school supplies and clothes. However, since Giovanni has food allergies there is a lot more that goes into preparing for the new school year. It’s a nerve wrecking thing to send your food allergic child off to school each day. Every day I pray God will protect him from exposure to his allergens. Every day I keep my phone where it is always within earshot with the ringer all the way up. Just in case.

As scary as it is, there are steps I took to help ensure a safer school year for my child.

The first thing I did was meet with the 504 plan coordinator  and school nurse at Giovanni’s school to set up his 504 plan. For a child with food allergies, this is one of the most important steps that needs to be taken to ensure a safe school year. Section 504 of the 1973 Rehabilitation Act prohibits discrimination against students with disabilities, which includes food allergies. It is a plan you make that allows for specific accommodations for your child in the classroom and in the school, in general.

Once his 504 plan was set up, I met with Giovanni’s teacher to go over the 504 plan and discuss  ways to make sure the classroom was safe for him. I also spoke with his music and art teachers and the cafeteria workers to ensure proper procedures were taken in those spaces so that there was no danger of cross contamination and possible exposure to Giovanni’s allergens.

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One other thing I did was to go over Giovanni’s Emergency Care Plan with his teacher and the school nurse. I discussed with them what Giovanni’s mild reactions are like and what Anaphylaxis looks like for him. I want to make sure that they know how to recognize his allergic reactions and what to do if it occurs.

Of course, the one other thing we did to prep for Kindergarten was to take a trip to the allergist. We had some more detailed testing performed, reviewed the Emergency Care Plan with the doctor, and he signed all the appropriate school forms.

So much planning and preparation goes into the school year for an allergy mom. But it’s all worth it if it means keeping my son safe each day.

 

How do you prepare for the school year as an

allergy mom?

 

 

 

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