FCAA-AP: Accomodating Students with Allergies and Special Dietary Needs
West Fargo Public Schools is committed to the safety and health of all students. The purpose of this policy is to:
- Provide a safe and healthy learning environment for students with food allergies;
- Reduce the likelihood of severe or potentially life-threatening allergic reactions;
- Ensure a rapid and effective response in the case of a severe or potentially life-threatening allergic reaction; and
- Protect the rights of food allergic students to participate in all school activities.
The level of sensitivity and the type and severity of reactions vary considerably among individuals with food allergies. Therefore, the school’s approach to preventing and treating food allergies must be tailored to those individuals' needs. At the same time, an undiagnosed student may experience an allergic reaction to food for the first time while at school and any allergic reaction can turn life-threatening. Therefore, the school’s approach must also be comprehensive.
EMERGENCY CARE PLAN FOR SEVERE ALLERGY
In all schools in West Fargo Public Schools, an Emergency Care Plan for Severe Allergy shall be developed for each student identified with any food allergy with potentially serious health consequences. The school nurse/teacher will develop the plan in collaboration with the student’s health care provider, the parents/guardians of the student, the school dietitian, and the student (if appropriate). The parents/guardians will submit a Special Dietary Accommodation form signed by a physician to the school. This shall be done prior to entry into school or immediately thereafter for students previously diagnosed with an allergy; it should be done immediately after the diagnosis for students already enrolled who are newly diagnosed with an allergy.
Depending on the nature and extent of the student’s allergy, the measures listed below may be necessary in the student’s protocol plan, but are not limited to:
- Meeting with Food Service Staff to develop a procedure for student’s daily menu choices;
- Posting additional signs (e.g. in classroom entryways);
- Prohibiting the sale of particular food items in the school;
- Designating special tables in the cafeteria;
- Prohibiting particular food items from certain classrooms and/or the cafeteria;
- Completely prohibiting particular food items from the school or school grounds;
- Educating school personnel, students, and families about food allergies; and/or
- Implementing particular protocols around cleaning surfaces touched by food products, washing of hands after eating, etc.
- A no eating policy on school transportation should be enforced, with appropriate exceptions made to accommodate diabetic students and others with special needs.
In all schools in West Fargo Public Schools, the principal/school administrator, in coordination with the school nurse/teacher/dietitian shall implement a protocol, consistent with this policy and with the severe allergy plan, providing food allergic students with protections during the school day. The protocols shall be reviewed and updated at least annually, as well as after any serious allergic reaction has occurred at school or at a school-sponsored activity.
POSTING OF SIGNS
In all schools in West Fargo Public Schools, signs may be posted in a conspicuous place in the classroom and cafeteria, advising that there are students with allergies to peanuts/tree nuts.
In all schools in West Fargo Public Schools, the principal/school administrator shall identify school personnel who might be involved in managing an emergency in a school, including anaphylaxis. Training shall be provided for these personnel in accordance with ND Administrative Code Article 33-37and on accessing the “911” emergency medical system, and preparation for movement and transport of the student. At all times during normal school hours at on-site school-sponsored activities, at least one person other than the school nurse should be trained and responsible for the administration of the epinephrine auto-injectors. These personnel shall review emergency protocols on an annual basis.
This section of policy shall not be deemed to create a guarantee that a trained employee will be present and able to use properly use the epi pen in an emergency. Furthermore, the District is unable to guarantee that the student’s epi pen will operate properly.
In all schools in West Fargo Public Schools, the principal/school administrator shall ensure all school employees and other adults-including, but not limited to, school nurse, classroom teachers, specialty teachers, aides, student teachers, substitute teachers, food service staff, dietitian, custodial staff, playground monitors, coaches, and after school providers - who may be involved in the care of a student diagnosed with a food allergy shall be informed of the severe allergy plan as appropriate, These individuals should understand and consistently follow plans and protocols, be able to recognize symptoms of an allergic reaction, know what to do in and emergency, and work with other school staff to eliminate the use of food allergens in the allergic student’s snacks and meals, educational tools, arts and crafts projects, or incentives.
Parents/caregivers will be informed by the school about their rights and responsibilities regarding severe allergy plan for food allergic students. They will be given clear guidance to help them follow the measures stipulated in these plans (e.g. avoiding peanut/tree-nut-based products in snacks or lunches).
The principal/school administrator shall work with the transportation administrator to ensure that school buses are equipped with required communication devices and that drivers are properly trained to recognize symptoms of all allergic reactions and know what to do in case of an emergency.
In all schools in West Fargo Public Schools, each student at risk for anaphylaxis shall be allowed to carry an epinephrine auto-injector with him/her at all times, if appropriate. In addition, the student would need to complete the appropriate paperwork for the epinephrine auto-injector. If this is not appropriate, the epinephrine auto-injector shall be kept in a conspicuous place in the classroom, cafeteria, physical education facility, health room and/or other areas where it is most likely to be used, with reasonable safeguards in place to ensure its safekeeping. A medically identified student may self-administer the epinephrine auto-injector, if appropriate.
If there is an anaphylaxis reaction, the Epi pen would be given. If appropriate the person with the reaction can self-administer the Epi Pen to themselves or an appropriately trained school staff can administer. Once the pen has been given 911 is called. In the event of an episode of anaphylaxis, the principal/school administrator shall verbally notify the student’s parents/guardians as soon as possible or delegate someone to notify them. Following the episode, the school shall document the incident and file it in the student record.
All threats or harassment of students with food allergies will be taken very seriously and will be dealt with in accordance with administrative policy ACEA-AP: Bullying.
Pursuant to Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504), the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPPA), the Rules and Regulations for School Health Programs (R16-21-SCHO), and other statutes and regulations, the confidentiality of students with food allergies shall be maintained, to the extent appropriate.