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Friday, 28 October 2016 10:04

Food Allergies in School

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Weber School District recognizes that the number of students with food allergies has been steadily increasing. Common food allergies include milk, eggs, wheat, soy, fish, peanuts and tree nuts such as pine nuts, pecans, and Brazil nuts.

As a district it is our goal to create a safe environment for students who have food allergies by developing model guidelines to be followed throughout the entire school, including classrooms, cafeterias, computer labs and school playgrounds. Family and Consumer Science (FACS) teachers in the secondary schools will take reasonable precautions when food is prepared in classes where students with allergies are present. The district’s goal is to help your child feel comfortable and safe in the school setting while learning how to manage their own food allergy long term. Students and classmates will have the knowledge to assist in monitoring situations.

Model Guidelines

  • Parents should notify teachers, administrators and/or school nurses during enrollment that their child has food allergies.
  • Parents should be involved in developing a class plan for dealing with food allergies. All parents and classmates need to be aware of what foods to avoid.
  • Parents should provide a list of foods the student should avoid and how to identify them on food labels.
  • Parents should provide non-perishable “safe snacks” for their student.
  • At home and school avoid cross-contamination; be sure that all students wash their hands before and after eating.
  • Desktops and tables should be washed after eating in the classroom.
  • Students may be assigned a specific desk or computer that can be sanitized before use.
  • Keep information about each food-allergic student in the roster by name so substitute teachers will be aware.
  • Know the symptoms of a student’s allergic reaction and know and follow the protocol for emergency response.
  • Listen to all complaints from the student and take them seriously.
  • Teachers need to take more precautions during field trips. Educate all chaperones on what foods must be avoided, explain the symptoms of an allergic reaction and inform about necessary medications.
  • Know the number and location of the nearest hospital.
  • Carry a cell phone and let all staff members know where it is kept.
  • Designate a staff member to check the safety of food served to the student.

Specific Cafeteria Practices for Students Allergic to Peanuts

In a severe case, a “peanut–free” table could be made available in the cafeteria. Hand sanitizer or alcohol wipes could be available for student use before and after eating.

Medical Exceptions

Substitutions must be made in the meal pattern if individual participating children are unable to eat school meals because of their disabilities, when that need is certified by a licensed physician. The physician's statement must identify:

  • The child's disability.
  • An explanation of why the disability restricts the child's diet. 
  • The major life activity affected by the disability. 
  • The food or foods to be omitted from the child's diet, and the food or choice of foods that must be substituted.

Medical food request forms are available in all school kitchens. They need to be on file in the main office and the unit manager’s office in the kitchen.

Menus can be planned to accommodate your student’s medical and food allergy requirements.  

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