District Administration October 2016 - 40

AGGRESSIVE ALLERGY CARE Clark County and Deerfield require all employees to watch an educational video on anaphylaxis and epinephrine. Unless they have witnessed anaphylaxis first-hand, some adults may not realize how dangerous allergies can be, says Mroz of Deerfield. More districts are reducing or eliminating food outside the cafeteria. Parents often feel a "right" to celebrate their children's birthdays with candy and cupcakes in class, says Clowes of FARE. "These other parents don't live in a food allergy world," she says. "They don't imagine that a chewy candy contains milk or licorice contains wheat." How to modify menus Today, most districts, such as Minneapolis Public Schools, have shifted to peanut-free menus in their cafeterias. Depending upon the number of students with allergies, each building principal, nurse and food service manager determines how to establish a table that's safe for students with allergies but doesn't make them feel singled out, says Nan Miller, Minneapolis' policy development specialist. For example, a table might be designated for those who eat school lunches, since students with allergies will likely have bought Resources Allergic Living: http://DAmag.me/l4 CDC Voluntary Guidelines for Managing Food Allergies: http://DAmag.me/f4 CDC Food Allergies in School Toolkit: http://DAmag.me/g4 Clark County School District Food Allergy Plan: http://DAmag.me/h4 Deerfield Public School's Food Allergy Plan: http://DAmag.me/i4 FARE: http://DAmag.me/j4 Mothers of Children Having Allergies: http://DAmag.me/k4 40 October 2016 "These other parents don't live in a food allergy world." --Gina Clowes, national director of training and outreach, Food Allergy Research & Education from the modified menus, she says, and a large number of students participate in the school lunch program. While peanut-free food service addresses just one type of allergen, students with other allergies typically have meals modified according to their 504 plans. Software alerts K8 food service workers in Sacramento USD when a student with allergies goes through the meal line. And a red flag alerts servers of what foods are off limits, says Diana Flores, Sacramento's nutrition supervisor. Sacramento serves more than 300 modified diets, up from about 200 just a few years ago, adds Melissa Peacock, area supervisor for nutrition services. Deerfield doesn't restrict food in the cafeteria, but works directly with families to decide how they want to manage lunchtime, says Mroz, the district's executive director of student services. A school might use color-coded trays to ensure that foods don't cross-contaminate, or students who want to sit with friends who have allergies must agree not to bring the allergen in their lunches, she adds. When there's no nurse The school nurse plays an integral role in ensuring policies are carried out, says Mattey. Nurses educate and work with parents, pediatricians, classroom teachers and principals to ensure that everyone understands the students' health plans and emergency procedures, she says. In part due to funding concerns, many districts have cut back or even eliminated nurses in every school. Less than half the country's schools have full-time nurses and 85 percent have nurses for just 30 hours per week, Mattey says. In schools without a nurse, unlicensed personnel can be trained by the district nurse to care for students with allergies. But Mattey says that strategy may be insufficient in the event of an emergency. Inclusion as important as safety It's not enough to just keep students safe, says FARE's Clowes. They need to have the same access to school activities as their peers. For example, sending a child with peanut allergy to the library while the class makes birdfeeders with peanut butter is not okay, says Clowes. Districts also need to be aware of a possible backlash against students with allergies, Clowes says. "You can't have one classroom in a grade without parties and the other three with because of one student with allergies," she says. "The more you do with guidelines and policies across the board, the less you have to do individually." FARE has had reports of students having allergens smeared on their lockers or backpacks or waved in their faces, says Clowes. It's humiliating and it's dangerous, she adds. Better training of school personnel will help minimize such incidents against students. It's a fine line between educating people and protecting the privacy of students, says Clowes. Although a child may choose to disclose allergies to friends or classmates, encouraging this as a means to a safer environment is not appropriate. Parents must discuss their child's medical condition with school officials but they should not be forced to share this information with classroom parents to get needed accommodations. "No child or parent should have to disclose private medical information to have safe access to activities," Clowes says. "That's the job of the administration, the teachers and school officials." DA Emily Rogan is a freelance writer in New York. District Administration http://www.DAmag.me/l4 http://www.DAmag.me/l4 http://www.DAmag.me/f4 http://www.DAmag.me/g4 http://www.DAmag.me/g4 http://www.DAmag.me/h4 http://www.DAmag.me/h4 http://www.DAmag.me/i4 http://www.DAmag.me/i4 http://www.DAmag.me/j4 http://www.DAmag.me/k4

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of District Administration October 2016

District Administration October 2016 - Cover1
District Administration October 2016 - Cover2
District Administration October 2016 - 1
District Administration October 2016 - 2
District Administration October 2016 - 3
District Administration October 2016 - 4
District Administration October 2016 - 5
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District Administration October 2016 - 7
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District Administration October 2016 - Cover3
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