The role of the immune system is to protect the body from germs and disease
A food allergy is an abnormal response by the immune system to a food protein
When the food is eaten, the immune system thinks the food is harmful and releases histamine and other chemicals to “attack” the enemy
There is no cure for food allergy
Complete and strict avoidance of the food is the only way to prevent a reaction
Eight foods cause 90% of the allergic reactions in
the United States:
Tree Nuts (e.g., walnuts, pecans, etc.)
4% of U.S. population or 12 million Americans (1 in 25) have a food allergy
Children are the largest group affected
4 to 6% of children have a food allergy
Growing problem…peanut allergy doubled in children over a five-year period (1997 – 2002)
Trouble swallowing Shortness of breath Repetitive coughing Voice change Nausea & vomiting Diarrhea Abdominal cramping Drop in blood pressure Loss of consciousness Swelling Hives Eczema Itchy red rash
A serious allergic reaction that is rapid in onset and may cause death
Each year in the U.S. anaphylaxis to food causes an estimated 50,000 to 125,000 emergency room visits, depending on the source
Individuals with food allergy plus asthma are at greatest risk for a serious reaction
Prompt administration of epinephrine is key to surviving anaphylaxis
Prescribed as auto-injectors (such as EpiPen ® or Twinject ® )
Totally avoid food allergens
Wise food choices through vigilant label reading and asking questions
Careful food preparation and cleanup
Be prepared in case of a reaction
Read every label every time
Formulations can change without warning
Don’t rely on “safe lists”
Allergens can be in non-food items
Soaps, shampoos, skin products, medications, pet foods
Wash hands, cooking utensils, and food
preparation surfaces to avoid reactions from trace
amounts of proteins left behind.
Liquid soap, bar soap, or commercial wipes for hands, not antibacterial gel sanitizers
Dishwashing detergent and hot water for cooking utensils and cutting boards
Common household cleaners for counters, tables, and other surfaces
Accidents are never planned
Keys to being prepared:
Medications must be immediately available at all times
Knowing how to recognize symptoms and administer medications quickly
A written Food Allergy Action Plan
Activate the Food Allergy Action Plan
R ecognize the symptoms
R eact quickly
R eview what caused the reaction and how well the action plan worked
Affects about 2 million school-age children
Up to 25% of peanut/tree nut reactions in schools are first-time reactions
Most reactions in schools occur from food in the classroom used for projects or celebrations
Once a reaction begins, there is no way to know how severe it will become
Take all food allergy-induced allergic reactions seriously
Every school should have a plan for managing food allergies
The plan to manage a student’s food allergies
should take into account:
Unique needs of the child
School environment (size, staff, etc.)
Goal of equal participation in all school-related activities
Developing the plan is a team effort involving:
Child’s family (parents/guardians)
The child who has allergies, as age-appropriate
Create an environment where children, including those with food allergies, will be safe
Employ prevention and avoidance strategies
Be prepared to handle an allergic reaction
Provide written medical documentation
Work with the school to develop a plan
Provide properly labeled medications and replace after use or when expired
Keep emergency contact information up-to-date
Teach the child age-appropriate
Clean hands before and after eating or handling food
Plan for safe parties/celebrations
Avoid using foods in classroom art/craft projects or as incentives
Prohibit food trading and sharing
Reactions can occur anywhere in school
Early recognition and treatment of anaphylaxis is imperative and life-saving
Education of all staff is important
Food Allergy Action Plan
School Guidelines for Managing Students With Food Allergies
How to Read a Label, Facts and Statistics
Be A PAL: P rotect A L ife From Food Allergies™
(800) 929-4040 www.foodallergy.org
Milford Exempted Village School District (MEVSD) Regulations
Parents will notify the school with their child’s allergy
Provide annual documentation, instructions, and medication as ordered by a physician
Educate their child in self management of their food allergy
Provide emergency contact information
Annual training to those staff who may interact with students with food allergies
Assure that medication is provided and kept in a secure, accessible location
Nurse will work closely with the parents and teacher to provide the safest environment
Classroom, lunchroom and office posters indicating that an allergic child is in the school
Snack and party restrictions
Snacks for individual students at the Elementary classroom must be off the MEVSD approved snack list.
The list may be further restricted if an allergen is present in that classroom.
Snacks in grade 7-12 will only be consumed in areas designated for food consumption.
Teachers will be permitted to use foods off the approved list for instructional purpose.
Teachers are not permitted to use candy or other food items as a reward for student achievement. Other reinforcement ideas should be encouraged
Stickers, certificates, other creative strategies.
Teachers may eat lunch at their desks during lunchtime but should take precautions to clean any areas prior to instruction.
This allows students to still come to the classroom during lunchtime for extra help or attention.
Parents can bring any treat to their child during lunchtime. They may NOT bring in bulk treats for the entire class, however non food items are permitted and can be distributed.
Any bulk treats brought to school will be sent home with the parent.
Winter Holiday (Christmas) and Valentine’s Day
Individual Schools may opt to NOT serve food at these parties. This will be a principal’s judgment.
If food is to be served at this party it must be off the approved snack list.
Food can further be restricted by classroom or grade level depending on allergies in those classrooms.
MEVSD discourages the consumption of food at parties.
MEVSD encourages students to participate in crafts and other activities to celebrate.
For other celebrations or customs or school rewards we are encouraging food that meets the USDA nutritional Guidelines to be served in the Cafeteria.
Students participating in the school breakfast program will eat in the cafeteria.
The Principal may allow certain students to bring their breakfast food back to their classroom if there are safety procedures in place to assure students with allergies are not exposed to foods that are dangerous to them.
ALL SNACKS WILL BE CHECKED BY THE TEACHER AND/OR HEALTH AIDE PRIOR TO DISTRIBUTING
It is the parent’s responsibility to encourage their child to use this table.
Friends of the allergic child may NOT sit at this table.
The table will be disinfected after each use with clorox solution.
Teachers should contact the parents prior to a field trip and encourage them to be a chaperone
Medication (Epi-pen) will accompany child on field trips
Parents and Health Aides will have a meeting prior to the start of each school year to go over the student’s allergies and specific care needed to ensure the safety of that child.
Emergency Health Care Plans will be kept in the clinic, cafeteria, teacher plan book (for sub), and transportation.
To view the complete Milford Exempted Village School District Wellness Policy and Regulations. www.milfordschools.org