A child with an allergy, asthma, even diabetes, has an “episodic” condition which, as a result of the amendments to ADA, normally qualifies the public school child for the protections of 504 and the private school child / day care youngster, for the protections of ADA.
New at Wrightslaw! We have created a new Allergies / Anaphylaxis page at
Food Allergy Research and Education
At the Food Allergy Research & Education Association (FARE) annual conference, I did a 5 hour presentation about allergies and anaphylaxis. The focus was on 504 and ADA and very little on IDEA.
Conference attendees received a CD-ROM that included almost 60 files. The CD included pdf copies of Wrightslaw: Special Education Law, 2nd. Ed., Wrightslaw: From Emotions to Advocacy, 2nd Ed., our video about writing Due Process and Complaint letters.
Many of the files on the CD-ROM were:
- complaints filed in federal court
- US Dept of Justice complaints and settlement letters
- manuals for use by schools regarding life-threatening allergies
- comprehensive guidelines for schools recently issued by the Center for Disease Control in collaboration with FARE
We have uploaded the files provided to the FARE attendees to our new Allergies / Anaphylaxis page.
The link to the complete listing of the files is at:
Access to Epinephrine Auto-injectors
With regard to allergies and anaphylactic shock (anaphylaxis), it is important that school staff have immediate access to an epinephrine auto-injector, such as the Epi-Pen or Auvi-Q.
If a child is exposed to a substance, often there are only minutes to spare. Sometimes, without a shot of epinephrine, death can occur within fifteen minutes of exposure.
Of the deaths by anaphylaxis, 40% have occurred in children who never before were allergic to the substance. Thus anaphylaxis is unexpected and death occurs.
Anaphylaxis and Severe Allergies Awareness
Football great Adrian Peterson loves gumbo. During training camp he was eating gumbo and suddenly came down with the symptoms of anaphylaxis, his throat was closing, was unable to breath and death was imminent.
Fortunately one of the team’s trainers immediately recognized the symptoms, administered an Epi-Pen, got him to the hospital, and he survived. He never before had an allergy to shellfish. He was at the conference and told his story.
To read one nurse’s story about this and her illegal use of an Epi-Pen, go to:
Nationwide among school nurses, she has become the leader in this field. I heard her speak at FARE and she was awesome.
State Legislation for Stocking Auto-Injectors in Schools
Since so many deaths have occurred without advance knowledge that the individual had an unknown allergy, some states have passed legislation about keeping stock epinephrine auto-injectors (Epi-Pen / Auvi-Q) at various locations in a school building without the need for a prescription for an individual child.
Linked from our new allergies / anaphylaxis page are manuals published by school systems and NSBA.
We hope you will find the resources useful.
My child has an allergy to peanuts. Another child was having cupcakes at school and they were made in a factory that contained peanuts. I tried telling the parents that my child is allergic but they do not care and decided that my child is not important and does not have to participate at all. Meeting with the principal was no help because he sided with the other parents. The school refuses to accommodate and will not go peanut free. What can I do?
My child was just diagnosed with a peanut allergy. She also has a 504 plan due to Autism. I asked the school to accommodate my daughters needs and consider going peanut free. The school including superintendent just laughed at me and said we don’t want to inconvenience the other parents. I reminded them that this is my child’s life and surely the other kids can eat something else. School refuses to listen and my son is made to feel like an outcast. What should be my nest step?
Try to find out what the state law, & rules say about schools’ obligations for children with allergies. Your state education agency should be able to assist you.
I am writing to find out more about absences. My child has several anaphylactic allergies and asthma. She will be seeking treatment(immunotherapy). However, these will cause her to have absences. Our school says that they cannot write it into the 504 that she will not be penalized for medical absences. They say that once attendance drops below 90% she will be penalized. We are in Texas. Any insight on this topic?
Can you ask your child’s physician to help you design a medical management plan or health care plan? Use this plan as the basis of accommodating your daughter in school.
Read these articles first.
You’ll find the link to a model plan the American Diabetes Association has online. Change the plan to reflect your daughter’s needs.
Near the bottom of that page you’ll find a list of “Typical Provisions in 504 Plans.” Note: “Permission for extra absences for medical appointments and sick days without penalty.”
More here. https://www.wrightslaw.com/heath/sec504.asthma.truant.htm
Wrightslaw, provides resources that can assist you. I work for the TX parent training and information center, prntexas.org Any TX student who is or may be out 4 or more weeks (consecutive or total) during a school year can receive homebound services while they are out. Any of our staff can assist you. Chuck Noe
I am writing regarding my daughter with severe health issues that have been grossly neglected from our school district and IEP team members. Our daughter has an LVN at school due to Epilepsy and other medical challenges. Her LVN’s have been given inappropriate policies/guidelines in order to block communications between parents and LVN’s. We are being retaliated against at the expense of our daughters health and emotional well being. We have a history of disturbing and relationships with our school district. We did go to due process a couple years ago. Damaged relationships are not even ‘workable’ any longer. We cannot send our daughter to school w/out legal guidance at this time.
I am writing to find some info for my sister. She was just diagnosed with severe environmental allergies. During the skin test, she was found to be allergic to everything. She missed 44 days of school being sick. There was no IEP or 504 in place of the time. She was just diagnosed. The school denied her appeal to the attendance tribunal. So she will not be a senior this year. She is devastated and I don’t know how to help her. Any insight on how to get her to be a senior? I have an appt for a 504 on Monday, but doesn’t help this last year.
Wonderful resource and THANK YOU for your focus on food allergy in schools, advocacy, and students’ rights! The members of Food Allergy Support (FAS) deeply appreciate this, as do all of us in the anaphylaxis community!