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March 24th, 2011
09:36 AM ET

Parents picket girl with peanut allergy, ask her to withdraw from school

A student at Edgewater Elementary School in Volusia County, Florida is being asked to withdraw from the school by her classmates' parents.

The student has a life-threatening peanut allergy and, as a result, her classmates are asked to make accommodations to ensure her safety. Some parents of children at the school say the extra steps their children are taking to ensure the girl's health, such as washing their hands or rinsing out their mouths, are taking away from their own children's learning. Meanwhile, the school is standing by its decision to make accommodations for the student.

Do your kids have allergies? What's your take on the situation?

Jason Carroll reports on the controversy in Florida.

Dr. Scott Sicherer, Professor of Pediatrics at Jaffe Food Allergy Institute at Mount Sinai Medical Center, talks to Kiran Chetry about how to handle food allergies.


Filed under: Education • Food • Health
soundoff (808 Responses)
  1. bemebpme

    So if i feed my kid a peanut butter sandwich, I can be sued?

    March 29, 2011 at 1:39 pm |
  2. Terry

    I have a highly allerigic reaction to a person's BO, and as such I want a law passed that requires everyone to apply deodarant under their arms and around their crouch once every hour. After all I am special and everyone should be forced to submit to my needs even if it intereferes with yours !!

    Nature had away of solving this problem, now it should be forced on YOU to solve this problem for me !!!

    March 29, 2011 at 1:33 pm |
  3. OMG

    Okay...I'm a parent and I would NOT send my child with peanut allergy to any public school. You may implement some safeguards onsite, but what guarantee that these measures are being followed? What happens when your child is exposed because one other kid decided to have a P&J sandwich or peanut-butter cookies...THEY ARE KIDS! Another thing, I would not ask the rest of the world to sacrifice the normalcy because my child is different....it would not be fair. The world doesn't work this way. That's the problem with people today....."you have to accommodate me....I deserve this because I'm special....I'm due this or owe this". All you picketing parents....I support you.

    March 29, 2011 at 1:32 pm |
  4. Susanne

    First, hats off to the school for going the extra mile to accommodate this child. Second, I don't believe that as a parent I would risk my child's life on the gamble that all students, faculty, and workers at the school would always remember to take the necessary steps to prevent a fatal accident. Nope...if it were my child, he or she would be homeschooled.

    March 29, 2011 at 1:19 pm |
  5. iamthefredman

    If your kid is sick you take care of your kid. That has nothing to do with MY kid. If your kid had any physical or mental/learning problem you would put them in an appropriate school that can deal with this issue. Rinse my childs' mouth? Are you insane? Go back to desk and start learning.

    I don't beleive anyone can be deathly allergic to peanuts or anything. if you know you are allergic, it is because you had an allergy attack once already. AND YOU ARE STILL ALIVE!

    March 29, 2011 at 1:14 pm |
  6. enricorosan

    This is getting too ridiculous to fathom. Forcing others to adopt a stringent regimen of hand washing, rinsing of their mouths and depriving themselves from precious time to do something more useful just to accommodate one student is adding insult and injury to common sense. That student should go to another institution instead of being an unreasonable burden on the rest. Her parents are absolutely insensitive and deserve to be rebuked by everyone for being so selfish by imposing their child's handicap on the other children.

    March 29, 2011 at 1:09 pm |
  7. iamthefredman

    I have the same nonsense at my childs' school. I cannot fathom how a school can legally make kids be forced to follow these ridiculous rules. If the kids so sick, she needs to be in a special school, home schooled or in a bubble. Yes, the bubble boy-bubble. It works. The parents have some hell of a nerve demanding and receiving such special treatment from an ordinary school. Where are MY kids rights to an uninterupted day of learning? And my kids love PBJ every day for lunch, and my kids can't eat what they want? Are they all crazy? This is madness!

    March 29, 2011 at 1:09 pm |
  8. SKW

    The parents who chose to protest ought to be ashamed of themselves and not least of all for the example they are setting for their children. Serious peanut allergies are on the increase and there but for the grace of God goes their children.

    March 29, 2011 at 1:08 pm |
  9. AB

    The issue is pretty simple really. Someone who has horrific allergies to common substances needs to be kept out of environments in which those substances are likely to occur. That includes public school. People keep saying that it is "not fair" that the child has allergies. Perhaps that's true, but it certainly is not the other kid's fault. Just because a medical condition is "not fair" does not mean that the entire rest of the world has to be punished to make it more fair.

    If the kid is endangered by peanuts, then the kid needs to be kept at home in a sterile environment. I know I would not want ot put my child's life at risk, relying on the faith that every single kid at the school remembers to wash their hands and mouth.

    March 29, 2011 at 12:59 pm |
  10. Mary

    As many others have, I also attended a peanut-free elementary school. Did it take a little adjusting to get used to the new rules and regulations that came around when the child was enrolled, sure. But was it hard or completely out of my way? Goodness no.

    For everyone talking about grocery stores and other public places suddenly taking on these peanut-free rules and how ridiculous it is to conform to the needs of one person with severe and potentially fatal allergies: There is a large difference between your local store and an elementary school.
    Part of what the school's job is, is to keep children safe, if that means making a few minor changes to how the students eat lunch or deal with their hygiene, is that so terrible? Encouraging your children to wash their hands after they eat is something that should be done anyway, and rinsing out your mouth after a meal isn't a bad idea and something my dentist advises anyway.
    Changing your child's way of life? So they don't get to eat a peanut butter product for lunch at school, guess what parents, their are other options out there.

    Selfish parents picketing and arguing against this poor six year old, shame on you.

    March 29, 2011 at 12:25 pm |
  11. HeywoodJablowme

    There are a number of things I'd like other people to stop doing or start doing. Anybody want my list?

    March 29, 2011 at 12:08 pm |
  12. Jaypoc

    Serious question, in a mandated "peanut free" school, who is going to compenstate the parents of "normal" kids for the added cost of excluding peanuts from their school lunches? Peanut butter is a cheap and healthy food, and there is no way to provide the same nutrition at the same cost. I'd imagine the extra cost would measure in the thousands of dollars over the course of a 13 year public education. I'm not sure how we'd be able to feed our kids without it.

    If this is about fairness, how would this be fair to the rest of the kids and their families?

    March 29, 2011 at 12:04 pm |
  13. scobra

    The parents should go the opposite direction and EMBRACE the six-year old student. I never heard of "It takes a village to raise a child UNLESS it becomes a minor inconvenience to the majority of the population"...

    March 29, 2011 at 11:38 am |
  14. OLDESTHAG

    And there is talk about STUDENTS bullying! Guess from whom they learned that behavior!

    March 29, 2011 at 11:36 am |
  15. Gladys

    My son has a nut allergy. I am more worried about the super bug they just documented in California because there was a failure at washing hands. Washing hands is good practice. It is the first step I told the allergen to write to the school nurse if my son starts to react. WASH OFF THE ALLERGEN! Washing hands prevents MRSA, Swine Flu, antibiotic resistant strep throat and all childhood dirt.

    March 29, 2011 at 10:40 am |
  16. ScDiva

    I cannot believe what I just read. This child has a peanut allergy & the parents are protesting because of the precautions the other kids have to take so that this child does not have a life threatening allergic reaction. I cannot believe such insensitivity!

    March 29, 2011 at 10:29 am |
  17. And

    I liked the comments about kids being proactive to help fellow students with allergies. In some cases children can be more adult than the adults raising them.

    March 29, 2011 at 10:02 am |
  18. Jeff Williams

    Am I suppose to deny my kid a peanut butter and jelly sandwich because of one childs allergies? I am not going to conform for one child against my child. If all of you can do that, more power to you. But I will under no circumstance, alter my childs habits, or behavior based on one child. All of you complaining about the parents out picketing, are any of you parents, and would you compromise your childs behavior for another?

    March 29, 2011 at 5:59 am |
    • Rick

      So can they charge you with manslaughter if your actions in spite of her condition lead to her death? If you're cool with that (accepting responsibility) then yes you can continue to be stubborn.

      March 29, 2011 at 7:43 pm |
    • Joeyjojo

      Of course! Compassion and understandig tends to run in our family, though...

      March 29, 2011 at 10:01 pm |
    • Ian

      Your child can still have butter peanut at home. If your child was the one who has the life threatening allergy, you would think differently.

      March 29, 2011 at 10:22 pm |
    • Amanda

      absolutely I would its called being a compassionate human being, why don't you just make the kid a chicken sandwich much healthier option instead of a sugar filled pb and j get off your high horse and think of other instead.

      March 30, 2011 at 12:46 am |
  19. David

    That girls parents should homeschool her if she has such a severe allergy to something that's ubiquitous to children. An individual should adapt to their environment, not completely alter it to serve to their needs.

    March 29, 2011 at 5:15 am |
  20. Janis Tolbert

    Unfortunately, the parents who are picketing this child are teaching that compassion is less important than getting your own way. It is a sorry testimony to the future of our country. My children were schooled with a child who had severe disabilities, and the entire class learned compassion, how to look out for someone, how to care and help someone and accept them as a person, not a problem. We talk about American values, and the selfish, meanspirited ones displayed by these parents behavior make me ashamed to be numbered with them. I wonder, how do they want to be treated when, say, they are old, or with altzheimers? Wouldn't they want someone to take a little special care? Oh but, that is talking about them isn't it!

    March 29, 2011 at 3:36 am |
    • Al

      Exactly!

      March 29, 2011 at 8:19 pm |
  21. kw

    Picketing, in this instance, is a group of cowards' way around having to put their own names down on anything or address an authority directly. Man up and talk to the teacher, the girl's family, the principal, ANYONE, DIRECTLY, about the problem you have, don't just make a bunch of idiotic signs because you're too scared to say, face to face with someone who might disagree with you, "My name is _______, and I don't want to make my kid wash their hands or rinse their mouth, because I am too absorbed in my own extremely remote, minor inconveniences to consider how bad this might make a little girl with a life-threatening allergy feel." I understand complaints, but to make them in such a cowardly, cruel way is disgusting.

    March 29, 2011 at 3:32 am |
  22. Hmm

    This is not a "how would you feel if..." issue. It is about what the law says in regard to accommodating a child at a government funded school especially in relation to the rights of the other children in attendance. I personally don't like either side of this issue. This child needs protection, which I personally think should come from the child knowing how to care for herself and take necessary precautions that she will have to take the rest of her life. I also think that the other students could learn a valuable lesson in compassion by taking these seemingly outrageous measures to heart though, compassion cannot be forced but must be learned. I do not agree with students having to wash their mouths out nor do I support the idea of nut free schools. The strangest part of all this is that the reporter mentioned that the rise of allergies may be due to a cleaner environment and later he supports the schools hygiene methods including excessive washing of hands. Though I am unsure of the causation of the rise in allergies, that logic is about as silly as making the girl go to school in a plastic bubble... though that just might work.

    March 29, 2011 at 3:00 am |
  23. Annoyed

    Have any of you who are so quick to berate parents for their lack of interest in "hygiene" ever been in a class with 30 young kids? Ever tried to get them to wait patiently in line? Ever seen them at a sink washing their hands? If you have, you might realize that rather than improve their "hygiene" it will probably result in more mess and germs spread not to mention dollars spent in excess paper towel waste and mess clean up. Our county is facing more than 45 million dollars in budget cuts for education. The last thing we need to be doing is taking our precious resources and asking them to spend a sixth of their day watching kids wash their hands instead of teaching. Good hygiene comes under the heading of parenting so the PARENTS should be teaching this, not the schools. Get over the rants about good hygiene and use some common sense. If we are so concerned about kids with peanut allergies, the only reasonable thing to do is make the school peanut free. Doesn't cost the school a thing. It may damage some family pocket books as peanut butter is a great, cheap source of protein. But no one cares about the finances of a few dozen people! But seriously, I for one see no problem with peanut-free (but then again, my kids don't like peanut butter).

    March 29, 2011 at 2:24 am |
  24. TH

    I have a severe nut allergy but I never had to make other people change their ways. I had to kow what to do, what to avoid, and how to be responsible for myself. If this child is too young to do these things for herself and is so severely allergic that breathing on her could kill her, she should not be at school with other children or one of her parents should be a classroom aid and watch over her all the time. I would not leave my child's life up to other 6 year-olds.

    As for the extra hand-washing, I think it's great! There will probably be a lot less disease running around the school now.

    March 29, 2011 at 2:07 am |
  25. Annoyed

    It's funny that many of you think it is so simple to have kids wash and rinse their mouths two times a day. Sure it could take 2 seconds, if you were ONE kid and you didn't wash well. Hello, we all know that it takes more than 2 seconds to properly wash your hands. Think (and don't just knee-jerk) about how long it would take to have 120 kindergarteners or 1st graders wash their hands when, at our school at least, each bathroom has 2 sinks and there are maybe 4 or 5 bathrooms. Sure, it sucks for this kid. Personally, I wouldn't be opposed to having a peanut-free school. It certainly beats having my kid stand in line twice a day and waste an hour for "washing" up. Maybe some of you did waste too much time in elementary school and that's why you see no problem with it. It also explains your complete lack of understanding of the basics of math. 30 kids times 1 minute (because lets face it, even if you take 2 seconds to wash, there's the drying and dawdling) equals 30 minutes. Multiply that by 2 you get 60 minutes. NOT 2 seconds!

    March 29, 2011 at 2:00 am |
  26. melissa

    SERIOUSLY???? What is wrong with these idiot parents?OMG so the kid has an allergy lol maybe they should start closing windows and kicking out kids cause their allergic to pollen. god what a joke!!!! People amaze me more and more everyday, its hard to believe what parents think their snot kids should be priveledge to !!!!!!!

    March 29, 2011 at 1:55 am |
    • Rick

      You mean like peanut products? I know! How entitled can you be?!

      March 29, 2011 at 7:51 pm |
  27. Connie

    As the grandmother of a 10 year old granddaughter who has lived with a life threatening peanut allergy since she was 2 years old, I cannot tell you how disappointed I am to hear about this protest and also to view some of the thoughtless commentary.
    Any one of us who would have a child live with this daily threat would do anything to protect our child. These children are NOT handicapped. They live with the fear of dying because someone is standing next to them eating a peanut butter sandwich! These are bright, loving individuals with every thought and feeling that a child without allergies might have. To try to isolate them or say that they should be put in a special school is beyond ridiculous and in every way biased and prejudiced.
    If you feel that your child's right to eat a peanut butter sandwich is more important than my granddaughter's right to LIVE then you are beyond stupid, selfish and sad. And let's just pray that the day doesn't come when YOUR child might need some special consideration in order to sustain their life. And when it does happen, let's hope people are kinder and more caring than you have been. Maintaining a peanut free school is a very small price to pay for a child's life. Or....exactly what price DO you place on a life? Maybe that is the question – maybe to you, life is cheap unless it affects you personally? You should be horribly ashamed of yourself – and you know who you are.
    Until you've walked in the shoes of a parent who has battled this day after day, year after year and who has known the vey real fear that their child might slide down the slide after someone who just ate a messy peanut butter sandwich and by the time that child is at the end of the slide they are no longer breathing.....until that day....you have no idea of the sacrifices that family...thoe parents are making every single day. And the only thing they are asking from you....another parent of another child, fortunately enough to be born without a life threatening allergy, is simply to keep the peanut products at HOME. Really? You know who you are and you should be deeply ashamed of yourself.

    March 29, 2011 at 1:36 am |
  28. fadedtrends

    I guess(i say this knowing I'm gonna be crucified by all of you but hear me out) I can see why parents are upset, all their children have to modify their lives because of one individual.And in our country Majority rules, I disagree strongly with the way they are going about expressing their anger, the little girl does not need this added to her life and as other posters have said, form a group of concerned parents and attend a school board meeting. What the children are being asked to do is not a burden, if it were an unusual request I could get behind them, but to rinse their mouth and wash hands I'm sorry but get over it

    March 29, 2011 at 1:19 am |
  29. Eric

    I think this whole thing is one more example of the inmates running the asylum. The vast majority of so called "peanut allergies" aren't allergies at all, but a young system having a reaction to something new and eventually these will subside. As for the small percentage of kids who have real allergies to peanuts or other nuts, I say they are the ones who should make concessions to the rest of us. Forcing the 99.9% of kids and staff to go through some sort of haz-mat scrub down is absurd. My son is two years old and I am committed to protecting his health, but I would never expect for the whole world to change their normal eating habits to avoid putting peanuts in his path. THIS IS RIDICULOUS!!! End of story. If you go along with this, you are a moron. Period. Wake up!!!!!!

    March 29, 2011 at 1:11 am |
  30. Ryan

    Shame on those parents. It is a public school, thus the school should make accommodations for the girl. If the parents of other children don't like it, they can send their kid to a private school.

    March 29, 2011 at 12:36 am |
  31. Brandy

    I cannot believe that this story is serious...adults picketing because their children have to wash their hands a couple extra times and using mouthwash??? Seriously? The funny thing is...I bet the kids don't even mind doing it...all the drama is coming from the parents..and thats what I think is really tragic about this situation. As a parent and teacher myself, I would gladly take any extra precautions needed to ensure the health and well-being of my students and of my own child...especially something as trivial as washing your hands. I just think it is really pathetic that these parents can't find anything better to do with their time than to picket about this...how about attend a PTA meeting or volunteer at the school and be an active participant in their child's education.

    March 29, 2011 at 12:34 am |
  32. Jennifer

    I have a child with a peanut allergy. Peanuts and sesame seeds. She is 18 months old. It is hard enough educating her grandparents on the subject. I can hardly wait for public school. Our nursery school luckily is peanut free by policy, but public school is not. Every class my older daughter has been in since she was two has involved at least one peanut-allergic child.

    These protesters will have karmic consequences to deal with. Peanut allergies are on the rise for unknown reasons.

    A note to the lactivista upthread– I fed my 18 month old breastmilk exclusively until she was 6 months old and continued feeding her until she weaned last month due to my milk production stopping. She refused all bottles and never had formula or cow's milk. My older two children were fed both breastmilk and formula due to me working full time. They did not develop food allergies.

    My youngest did. In fact, I was eating peanut butter in her infancy the proteins passed through my breastmilk– she had constant rashes on her face and stomach throughout her infancy and it wasn't until she actually tried a peanut butter sandwich and went into full on vomiting, face swelling and hives that we discovered the allergy. When I elimated peanuts and sesame seeds from my diet, her rashes subsided.

    So go on, encourage breastfeeding it is wonderful for many sound and proven reasons but it does not prevent food allergies.

    March 29, 2011 at 12:29 am |
  33. Tom

    The school is obligated to provide reasonable accommodations for this student. What the real question is what do you consider reasonable?

    If a child is sensitive to light should all the lights in the school be dimmed? If a child is sensitive to chemicals should every student be forced to use non-scented soap, shampoo and detergent? If a student has a low immune system should all the other students have to be sprayed with a germicide and wear masks?

    If my child had such a horrible condition that accidentally coming into contact with a common substance could kill them I would have to find them a special school or home school them.

    I do not know why parents would send their child to a public school knowing they could be killed from any little slip up? These parents need to step up and take some responsibility for their child's well being.

    March 29, 2011 at 12:06 am |
  34. Linda J Lerch

    My granddaughter has life-threatening peanut allergies. Her California pre-school class had children wash their hands and rinse their mouths. The children and the parents understood. Anaphylaxis can occur mere seconds from being exposed to the allergen. Peanut and other nut allergies are becoming more and more common, and is not a reason to ostracise a child and ask the child to leave a school. It would be interesting to see how those selfish parents would respond if it was THEIR child who could die at school because of a preventable exposure to an allergen.

    March 28, 2011 at 11:49 pm |
  35. jimbonasium

    THE NEEDS OF THE MANY OUTWEIGH THE NEEDS OF THE FEW OR THE ONE. Pretty frickin simple.

    March 28, 2011 at 11:26 pm |
  36. Love bug.

    My mom is highly allergic to peanuts and you know what we do? Don't buy anything with peanuts in it. Instead of making the kids wash maybe take out peanuts? Health is more important than education people need to learn that. I'm sure if the protesters had kids with allergies as bad as this child they would feel the same way. Guess now days people don't care about child health instead education is more important lets close the hospitals and doctor offices people!

    March 28, 2011 at 11:18 pm |
  37. StephaniefromMD

    As someone who is deathly allergic to peanuts and a mother of a child who has a severe food allergy, I just find this utterly shameful. I grew up in an era (I'm 37) where peanut allergies especially the kind that can kill you in less than five minutes were basically nonexistent. My allergy has been life threatening since I was 5; part of the way that I learned how to read was by reading labels and constantly had to ask with anything that I had to eat "Does this have peanuts in it?" I endured the looks like I was from outerspace.(please keep in my I was a child) I received responses like "Oh.... you just don't like peanuts" or "I'm sure you aren't THAT allergic to them". I learned early on to be very blunt and upfront about it. (again realize I was a small child); I would reply to them "No, I really am that allergic to them. Yes, I will turn blue and die in a matter of 3 minutes so yeah, I guess I really don't like them either." There was an instance to where I was at Sunday School and we had to make peanut butter bird feeders, you know the kind with the pine cones with bird seed and my response was I'm allergic to peanuts. What I was told was "Well, you're not going to be eating it". Sure enough, five minutes later my face swelled up and I looked like minature elephant man(again I was 6); needless to say my sunday school teacher realized after the incident the seriousness of my allergy. My point is that it has been over 30 years. 30 years... the allergy has unfortunately grown a lot more common but the fact that people still don't realize the seriousness of the situation until they actually have a loved one that has this allergy or til they see the adverse reaction that this allergy can have. Peanuts are not like other foods. They have peanut dust which float in the air and can do the same potential damage that eating it can have. (Think pet dander that can kill you.) There are several airlines that I cannot and will not fly on because they may or may not have peanuts on that flight. They can't guarantee it and I know that I can chance it because if they do, in all seriousness I won't live through the flight. This poor child shouldn't be ostracized because she has this allergy, she's going to have a hard enough time staying away from peanuts and dealing with this allergy as it is.

    March 28, 2011 at 11:00 pm |
  38. Mark

    What if it was my child?

    I wouldn't tell other people that they couldn't eat peanut butter (and then act like I was doing them a favor because i know more about its nutritional value than they do).

    I wouldn't tell other people to wash their hands or rinse their mouths.

    And I wouldn't put young children in a position where they could kill a classmate simply by eating peanut butter and forgetting to wash their hands- if this girl dies, how many kids might go through life thinking that it was because of something they did or didn't do.

    March 28, 2011 at 10:55 pm |
  39. Michelle

    I agree that picketing a child is absurd and these parents should be ashamed of themselves. That being said, I have a hard time with this little girl's allergies being called a disability. As a teacher of children with developmental delays, we can hardly group a child with allergies into a "disabled" category and I don't think that an allergy should be covered by the IDEA, given that is supposed to safeguard the rights of those with true disabilities.
    I hope that this is resolved quickly and that this little girl gets the education she is entitled to!

    March 28, 2011 at 10:15 pm |
  40. Stop Selfishness

    My kid has no allergies, but I really just can't see the problem with making accommodations for ones with severe allergies. I'm glad the school is holding firm with their policy.

    A severe peanut allergy isn't just the sneezing and itchy eyes that you might get by a second or third-hand dander allergy; basically by saying 'toughen her up' or you're saying 'I'd rather see one kid go into shock than deny another their PB&J.' Saying 'homeschool her' is equally laughable. How many parents in this day and age honestly have the luxury of that sort of time commitment, and even if they do, it's still a stretch to say that they think they have the skills necessary to homeschool. We have public schools available to ALL for a reason! It's really time we stopped being such a me-centered society and made accommodations for others. Love thy neighbor doesn't just apply to situations where things are easy for you.

    March 28, 2011 at 10:05 pm |
  41. Michael

    .......center of disease control reports there are 150 deaths each year due to ALL food allergies combined. 150! Cigarettes kill about 440,000 people in the US every year from smoking related illnesses according to cancer.org. Why not such passion about getting cigarettes banned ? For a handful of deaths each year peanuts should be banned from public areas ? Come on..........

    March 28, 2011 at 9:54 pm |
  42. DT

    What kind of example are these parents setting? Instead of educating themselves and their children about allergies (and other less common health issues), they ostracize a young girl and make her feel more of an outcast.

    I used to work for a school where several students had peanut allergies. The school did a wonderful job educating the classmates, parents and staff of peanut allergies, as well as other health issues. There was always an Epi-Pen or Benadryl available in the nurse's office. Just goes to show, a little education goes a long way – and isn't that why the kids are in school in the first place?

    March 28, 2011 at 9:16 pm |
  43. WTF

    There are quite a few of you weighing in that don't have a clue about severe peanut allergies, let alone compassion, selflessness, etc. Peanuts and peanut oil are in a lot of foods, not just PB and from the shell. Products made on equipment that had nuts or in facilities that have nuts can cause a reaction, especially if consumed. And if another person says washing hands is a big inconvenience or she should be taught to fend for herself as a 6 year old, I will likely vomit. Don't let the truth or common decency get into the way of a hateful diatribe. It is a good thing we can't respond directly to posts because my hands would be tired from typing. So many cowards that can spew intolerence and hatred behind the safety of a computer screen. If I were in this family, I would want to leave such a pathetic place (plus I'd be scared to touch anything. there's probably poop everywhere - their right to not wash up and all). Just remember, it takes a community to raise a child.

    March 28, 2011 at 9:07 pm |
  44. deborah randall

    Have you ever intentionally put your child in harms way, much less, at deaths door? This is what we as parents of peanut allergy children do everyday we send them off to school. Making that decision is the hardest deceision we have ever had to do; but when the alternative is to put your child in a glass bubble and therefor not have any kind of normal life.....you tend to do everything possible to hold her tight and give her wings at the same time. I ask those parents who are claiming hardship for washing hands and keeping lunchboxes outside the door....if you could save a life by washing your hands.....would you?

    March 28, 2011 at 8:49 pm |
  45. Evo Girl

    I hope all the dog-eat-dog "Darwinians" making comments here consistently refuse to avail themselves and their loved ones of antibiotics and other medical interventions so they can keep the species as fit as possible! For some it seems this story is less about keeping a little girl safe then about some absolute right to perfect selfishness.

    March 28, 2011 at 8:41 pm |
  46. Laura

    Remember that movie "The Boy in the Bubble" – they put the BOY in the bubble, not everyone/everything else!

    March 28, 2011 at 8:24 pm |
  47. Mom of daughter with Peanut allergy

    I have a 5 year old daughter who has a severe allergy to peanuts. I think that these parents are unreal. How could you discriminate against a young child? She did not ask for this nor did she want to have it. These allergies are a real thing today, so why should the child suffer. Our school has made many accomodations for my daughter, her classroom is peanut free and she sits at a table with other children like her also. So your telling me that a child that has a disability or needs help in her classroom or is a behavorial issue should not be able to get the help they need. Really don't you think the message you are sending to your children is how to behave ignorantly. Why don't you take a minute to walk in the childs shoes and see how it feels, or why don't you take a walk in my shoes having to wonder and fear that people she is near or around are taking proper precautions so that she won't have a reaction.

    March 28, 2011 at 8:09 pm |
  48. Cielo

    It seems that there MUST be more to this story. I read somewhere else that the kids are forbidden from bringing their backpacks into the classroom as well as being told to not eat any peanut products in case they breathed on her. THAT is going over the line, as far as I'm concerned. Sure, hand washing, mouth rinse, OK. But isolating kids belongings and limiting OTHER KIDS DIETS for ONE KID is too much. I think something must have triggered this response. People are usually quite compassionate about chidlren and sympathetic towards special needs. In 20 years of teaching I have never had a kid with severe food allergies. I don't know if I would support the banning of backpacks and the limiting of the classes diet (mine included, and I LOVE peanut products). Come ON, CNN! Give us the WHOLE story!!

    March 28, 2011 at 8:04 pm |
  49. Frank Mondana

    Back in school, we had a kid who was allergic to peanuts. ONe time I said there were peanuts in my lunch and he went into convulsions. Problem was there was no peanuts or anything closely related to peanuts anywhere near me.
    When he heard that his symptoms cleared right up.

    March 28, 2011 at 7:49 pm |
  50. Candice Burdette

    Here was a nice opportunity for children.. and parents.. to practice to tolerance, empathy, and friendliness; but nope, just drama. Come On Parents!!!

    March 28, 2011 at 7:49 pm |
  51. Frank Mondana

    I have a disability too. It's my job to handle it; not make the world bow to me. If you have a peanut allergy, it's your job to steer clear and not force the other 99% of the world to cater to you.

    March 28, 2011 at 7:47 pm |
  52. Gerald of Seattle

    So, parents have a problem with clean hands? with brushing teeth?
    Why not promote these requirements to assure the health of those with medical problems as something for EVERYONE? a good school should be a healthy school.

    March 28, 2011 at 7:06 pm |
  53. James

    Something is missing in this story......is it really just hand washing and mouth rinsing that has the parents up in arms or is there more to it?

    March 28, 2011 at 6:28 pm |
  54. mac

    I am allergic to grass (hayfever). Is it reasonable for me to ask my school to go grass and tree free? Pave the football field? Basketball is a healthy alternative... What about dust allergies? Should we turn schools into clean rooms and require smocks, masks, and footies? Kids can't have pets at home for fear of bringing dander? The thing about disability rights is about making the appropriate accommodations that satisfy the needs of the few, without sacrificing the needs of the many. Where is the reasonable line? Banning peanuts isn't an appropriate measure. Hand washing is. As is defining a peanut-free menu and a peanut-free area in a cafeteria. I was recently at a ball game where, after paying $7 for a bag of peanuts, the person behind me tapped me on the back and asked me not to eat them, since they had an allergy. At some point, we need to stop treating allergies as handicaps. They are a disadvantages, clearly. But we all have those to one degree or another. Students need to learn to cope, ask for support, and then manage the risk. You don't try to change the world into you own private protective bubble. Two final thoughts: picketing a student is grossly inappropriate. Take up your concerns privately and professionally with the school or the board. The comment about parents needing to be this emotionally invested in education versus picketing about peanut diet and hygiene is spot on.

    March 28, 2011 at 6:12 pm |
  55. Andrea

    I do think that people are so selfish when it comes to others needs. I work in an office and two of us have extreme perfume allergies but the rest of the women act as if they work in a perfume/lotion factory. The funny thing is that one of the women has allergies and takes medicine for it. Why not just stop wearing the lotion and perfume because it makes us miserable and they really don't care. They tell us to take medicine. Wow. That is the way our children are today,,,, they want everything now and now is too late and I just think it is sad that the compassion for others is not there. Im just saying. They do this at church as well but there, you have hundreds of women with different scents and it gets unbearable at times.

    March 28, 2011 at 6:11 pm |
  56. April V.

    Holy cow, you Americans are disgusting. no compassion at all! In Canada, I don't know of any schools that allow nuts. How would you like them apples? The only sandwich my kids will eat is peanut butter and guess what? I give them something else and all is fine in the world. They've had tomato soup brought in a thermos every day of the year with fruit and crackers. There is a long list of things they cannot bring, including things like ramen but we deal. If I knew I sent something to school that would kill another child and it did, I would not be able to live with myself. It is horrifying the attitudes on here. Un-fricking believable!! Shame on being so hateful towards an innocent little girl who does not want to be the way she is.

    March 28, 2011 at 6:10 pm |
  57. Honestly

    Honestly, if my child were deathly allergic to anything, I would home school him/her until he/she were old enough to avoid the allergen on their own. I would never think of forcing hundreds of other kids (and their parents) to accommodate my child.

    March 28, 2011 at 6:09 pm |
  58. baseball fan

    Why is it that we never hear a story about Florida that doesn't involve raving lunatics? I'm cutting off my plans to head to spring training next year, no way I'll bring my family to that state. Too many better options closer to home, like the half-way house across town or the state mental hospital. Horrible, horrible people there.

    March 28, 2011 at 6:02 pm |
  59. Human

    Let's put the allergy aside... The students are being required to practice good hygiene. Don't we teach our kids to wash their hands and brush their teeth? Oh wait, we don't... as per the guy on the interview that's toothless saying it isn't fair.

    March 28, 2011 at 5:58 pm |
  60. Appalled

    I'm so glad to see what message these parents are sending their FIRST GRADERS! Open your eyes people! I guarantee none of the children have complained...one small minded parent turned it into a problem with academics. Kids should be washing their hands throughout the day anyway! And if rinsing out their mouths is one more short step, then guess what, these children are learning TOLERANCE for other people. Wake up. Eventually these children will be in the workforce, where if you are told to do something you don't like, well you do it, or have no job. These parents are teaching First Graders to look at their classmates, that they probably have never judged, and are highlighting the differences and teaching them to judge. Shame on these parents.

    March 28, 2011 at 5:54 pm |
  61. JoeSmith

    It appears I might be in the minority in my comments. But it appears the whole school is bending for one person. It is sad for the child who has the allergies, but to make everyone change their life style also infringes on their rights. So now a child can't eat peanut butter because another one might get sick. Where is the line drawn at what is fair and what is not. This is not an easy subject but it is surprising that a class or whole school of students should be made peanut free for one person. Let's take some personal responsibility and teach the child to be safe.

    March 28, 2011 at 5:51 pm |
  62. echo

    These sound like ppl who don't wash their hands!! Replace peanut allergies with AIDS, ADHD, Obesity, African-American or female and these ppl would realize their act is SHAMEFUL! I bet they even consider themselves good Christians! Oh no, my child is being required to wash their hands! oh the government is taking away my child's right to be a total slob! oh the horror! These parents need to go jump in a lake! Their behavior is outrageous. Just wait until their perfect children get into an accident, loose and eye or put on 50 lbs and then the shoe will be on the other foot. They should march straight to church and ask for forgiveness for being such a bunch of grumpy bigots!

    March 28, 2011 at 5:50 pm |
  63. Michael

    ......I just watched a Senate hearing featuring freshman wackjob Senator Rand Paul, Ron Paul's son. He was complaining he doesn't want to be told what energy saving toilet to buy or what lightbulbs to buy that his freedom is being infringed upon and that he wants to be able to buy toilets that waste water and bulbs that save energy if he so chooses, so why would these parents want to be told what to do ?

    I guess he would like to be able to paint the school walls with peanut butter if he wanted to.

    March 28, 2011 at 5:43 pm |
  64. Mrs. K

    That is a shame. Parents should understand. My children attend a peanut free environment school. The school understands that this is a dangerous allergy and all parents concur. To be washing their hands and rinsing their mouths are great habits to have.

    March 28, 2011 at 5:41 pm |
  65. D

    Would any of these parents still thing the special treatment for this child was unfair if it was THEM or THEIRS with the life threatening allergy? I would guess they are of the opinion that no one deserves special treatment...except them. Everyone needs help sometime in their lives. My guess is these same selfish, greedy parents will demand everyone to bend over backwards just for them when it comes to their turn. By the way, washing your hands more than once a day and rinsing out your mouth more than once a week is NOT special treatment...it's good hygiene. Hope they practice it.

    March 28, 2011 at 5:37 pm |
  66. BadEgg

    What is this kid going to do when she becomes an adult and joins the working world? Will she expect her employer to force the employees to wash their hands and rinse out their mouths numerous times a day?

    March 28, 2011 at 5:36 pm |
  67. Cool Ranch

    Well my my my. What nice polite Southern gentlepeople. Ugh.
    Washing out their mouths? Oh no! You mean like brushing teeth or something? Gasp!
    Seems like this doesn't really take away from their education but add to it. Chances are some of these same kids may likely develop allergies of their own in the course of their lives. What then? A true "Christian" change of heart and newfound compassion?
    The fact that these peole have children of their own means the battle is already lost.
    Nice example people.

    March 28, 2011 at 5:34 pm |
  68. reba

    People are so self-absorbed these days. That poor child.
    Shameful!

    March 28, 2011 at 5:31 pm |
  69. Jim Of Nebraska

    The peanut protesters don't concern me as much as the poor spelling from Angie Welch on March 24th. This elementary school teacher is not competent with even the most basic of skills.

    March 28, 2011 at 5:30 pm |
  70. What is a school for?

    go to cornallergens.com and read all of the different names for corn and corn derivatives. i have a severe allergic reaction to corn. (PVC also)

    I did hole up and stopped eating because i got sick of being sick and it was obvious that it was coming from food, but I didn't know what food exactly. it seemed like all food to me. but...look at my allergies...that stuff is in most food.

    i believe that it will kill us...slowly, but unless we want to kill ourselves (and that's a real concern when you can't find food that doesn't make you sick and absolutely nobody understands it) we have to figure out how to secure a safe food/water supply in packaging that doesn't make us sick. and it's work. a lot of work. our food/water supply is pretty bad.

    March 28, 2011 at 5:30 pm |
  71. Michael

    ......also, since when is an allergy considered a disability. My wife could die from a bee sting. She is allergic to them. Should special concessions be made for my wife anywhere she goes ?

    I am terribly allergic to potpourri and womens perfume. Should Pier 1 and all stores that sell perfume have to shut down if I show up at the mall ? I could go into a sneezing fit and bump my head on something and be killed.

    March 28, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
  72. Canadian Dad

    Do you realize how intolerant and ignorant you are making your country appear to be? I am assuming a disproportionate number of whack jobs are posting on this story because no one in their right mind would suggest these are unreasonable precautions. Hand washing ?? In the rest of the world, we wash our hands regularily. It even helps prevent colds and viruses. Canadians have the nut free thing figured out. Not having nuts in schools is not the end of the world as you would presume by some of the 'inconveniencing all because of one posts' or the 'that's too much to do – just let her die' posts. If we stop washing our hands tomorrow, what horor will they come up with tomorrow... blowing our noses in a TISSUE and not our sleeve? Oh, the humanity. In summary, you are looking like a bunch of insensitive idiots (not just the protesters). Please stop. Or those with allergies can seek asylum in Canada maybe ??

    March 28, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  73. What is a school for?

    I was chronically sick for many years and it did affect my education. and work, and my family. i suffered from bullying also, but mostly because of ignorance. The medical profession was not where i needed them to be. I was looking, searching, asking the questions, but I didn't get answers until a couple of years ago (too late to help my life). Once it was diagnosed as corn, chicken, eggs, chocolate (think of eliminating everything from your diet with those) I finally got windows of not being sick...and it was wonderful. But, our food supply is so bad that it's just next to impossible and they don't have to label things so you can still get attacks...most recent for me is Vitamin C from trader joes. the label did't say anything about corn. i called the company and they said that it would be on the label if it was in there, but it wasn't. i made them chase it down to the manufacturer and it was corn. My body knew that. It doesn't miss it. So, not putting it on the label only means that I will have to deal with it more often. It's wrong and should be illegal to do that. (Another reason why Citizen's United should be overturned.)

    March 28, 2011 at 5:25 pm |
  74. Babe Edwards

    My son has a severe peanut allergy. Teaching other children to keep clean, and making them aware of how they can help prevent an allergic reaction has been a wonderful teaching tool for everyone. Kids learn to have compassion for a fellow student, and get to see by example what taking care of one another is all about. It wouldn't matter if the issue was helping a child if they have fallen, taking a student to the nurse if they were sick, or helping somone with a math problem....the bottom line is that we teach our kids to help one another so they can become caring, compassionate adults with a heart....just what our society needs.

    March 28, 2011 at 5:25 pm |
  75. dnha14

    Let's just put the peanut farmers out of business. No more peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for lunch. No more peanuts anywhere because of a few people. I don't mean to be crass, because I have a close relative that is allergic to strawberries, but a whole school has to accommodate a single student? I'm sorry, but that is just not right. The student with the allergy and the parents have some responsibility in the situation. How can you make a student body responsible for the health of a single person? What if something happens to the allergic child? Will they arrest a child peanuts for attempted murder? Every person on the planet has to adjust to their environment. Some need to adjust more than others. We can feel compassion for those people, but we should not require the world to change to accommodate the needs of a few. Sorry if you think I am being evil and mean, but just think about it for a second.

    March 28, 2011 at 5:24 pm |
  76. Mike

    By doing this the school is making everyone responsible for the well being of another child. The law suits will fly if that kid has a problem, it will be everyone fault except the parent and child. What wrong with the child making sure they are safe.

    March 28, 2011 at 5:20 pm |
  77. Michael

    ....who said the needs of the many outweigh the needs of a few or one ?

    I think that was Leonard Nimoy !

    March 28, 2011 at 5:19 pm |
  78. Michael

    What about the rest of the kids in that school. Couldn't they eat peanut butter for lunch and touch a railing or water fountain or any doorknob at school and then the child with the allergy could touch any of these.

    Picketing was not the answer. Every parent in that class should just stop sending their kid to school, leaving only the allergic girl in that class all by herself. That probably would have been more effective.

    Apparently, leaving the house is too dangerous for this child and they
    should be home schooled. Many allergies to foods and such are false positive tests anyway.

    March 28, 2011 at 5:16 pm |
  79. Leo

    Last year my child had a classmate with severe food allergies.. All the students had to wash their hands a couple times a day. The teacher commented to me that there were less sick days taken than in past 20 years she has taught.

    March 28, 2011 at 5:12 pm |
  80. Darlene Martin

    http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/healthyschools/anaphylaxis.html

    March 28, 2011 at 5:04 pm |
  81. keeth in cali

    Given the selfish lack of consideration of the protesting parents, I'd suggest the solution should be the other way around.

    March 28, 2011 at 5:01 pm |
  82. John

    It can be argued from both sides, but parents should not get angry, they should express how proud they are of their children for making a safe learning environment for another student who has one "deadly" disadvantage. This student is a person, don't cast her aside because you are too lazy to wash your kid's mouth and hands.

    March 28, 2011 at 5:01 pm |
  83. Mike Henry

    Why should a large group be asked to make unusual concessions for one individual? There are many people who have an unusual allergic condition, there can not be a compromise made for each (fish, lactose,and gluten come to mind). So one student has an allergy to a food and everyone else has to change their habits? I understand that this child has a fatal allergy, however so do many people to many things. Bee allergies are far more reaching and common, do we expect to stop playing sports because an allergic child might be stung? Peanuts happen to be a cheap and nutritious source of protein and fat, along with manganese and niacin. Keeping them out of the school cafeteria only weakens an already limited nutritional value of the school breakfast and lunch program. It is sad that this kid can't eat peanuts, but it is sadder that a whole school is being asked to change so that one kid can live in a bubble. It is this child and her parents responsibility to make sure she has an Epi-Pen and that the people around her know how and when to use it, not the worlds responsibility to not eat peanuts.

    March 28, 2011 at 5:00 pm |
  84. David

    Who wants to bet that the picketing parents are republican? Some of them are definitely tea party material.

    March 28, 2011 at 5:00 pm |
    • Jeniece

      That was an ignorant comment

      March 28, 2011 at 5:12 pm |
    • Mary

      I think his comment is pretty observant actually. The Tea Party's individual freedom BS seems to translate to these parents pretty well.

      March 28, 2011 at 5:31 pm |
  85. Lisa

    As the parent of two children with severe peanut allergies, I am so encouraged by the number of supportive posts! Thank you.
    Schools are supposed to keep our kids safe and as parents, we expect nothing less. If asking kids to wash their hands (which they should be doing anyways) keeps another child from having a life-threatening reaction, then I think it's the very least that we can do to protect our kids.
    I highly doubt that anyone's education is being affected by the practices at this particular school. It sounds to me like it's the ignorant, selfish parents that need to be better educated.
    Thanks again for all of the support!

    March 28, 2011 at 4:59 pm |
  86. Joe

    I can't believe people are picketing over this??????? You have to be kidding me!!!

    "washing their hands or rinsing out their mouths, are taking away from their own children's learning."

    actually it may contribute to learning about good hygienic practices.

    If they don't like it, maybe they should remove their own kids and send them to a special school for kids without peanut allergies.....

    Ridiculous. This sets some example for their children.....

    March 28, 2011 at 4:58 pm |
  87. kathy

    The protesting parents are right, this situation is taking away from their children's learning; their children are not learning compassion, they are not learning how to be considerate of others feelings or special needs.

    What they are learning is that if someone is different from theirs that its okay to exclude that person because including them might take a few minutes away from them. What they are learning is that it's okay to bully someone because that is what they are doing bullying the allergy sufferer, her parents and the school to ease their own levels of comfort.
    Shame on them.

    March 28, 2011 at 4:58 pm |
  88. Maria

    So what happens when the next kid has an allegry to fish, tuna sandwiches are banned? Are student then going to have accompate rabid vegans and not have balogna sandwiches? In the real world, people have to adjust to the majority...and if the parents of a disabled kid wants to 'mainstream' them then that means the kids needs to fit in with the rest, not wthe world gets turned around just for them. I would say homeschooling is more appropriate in this case.

    March 28, 2011 at 4:55 pm |
  89. dan neace

    I realize this is a very difficult and sensitive issue about compassion but at some point the real world is out there and this girl is going to have to live in it. My wife's nephew is severely allergic to potatoes and cannot be in a room where they are being cooked. Her daughter nearly died eating shell fish at a wedding and we had to rush her to the hospital. I have seen how life threatening these situations are first hand, and although it is a difficult life with allergies this severe, asking a 6 year old to quit her school could be traumatizing . When she gets older and a little more wiser, she will be able to avoid most situations on her own. For now, I guess the only solution would be for the school to do it's best to insure she remains safe.

    March 28, 2011 at 4:53 pm |
  90. Seriously???

    I blame the lazy parents of this child. How quick everyone is to classify the petitioners as uncompassionate, yet no one questions the intelligence of that girl's parents for continuing to put her in a potentially life-threatening situation. Maybe the parents need to go back to school...

    March 28, 2011 at 4:52 pm |
  91. lf

    Typical media, my guess is they left out just enough information to incite a pitch fork division. How big is the real list? It probably has things on it far more arduous then washing hands.

    March 28, 2011 at 4:52 pm |
  92. Rachel

    Seriously? I mean...wow. As a parent, you are mad because your child has to wash his/her hands and mouth? These parents should be HAPPY that the school is enforcing hygiene rules. Washing hands is a GOOD thing.

    Those parents apparently have no lives. And are mean to boot.

    March 28, 2011 at 4:51 pm |
  93. Seattle Sue

    I wouldn't wish a life-threatening allergy on anyone but these parents are clueless. We spent years trying to teach people about nut allergies and in the process trying to keep our son alive. The stress on our family was horrible. If only these parents could walk a mile in our shoes – you'd have a VERY different attitude. This makes me sick.

    March 28, 2011 at 4:49 pm |
  94. Bridget W

    As a chid with a severe and life threatening peanut allergy this story makes me very sad. Unless you know what it's like to look into your 8 year old son's big blue eyes that are welling up with tears as he asks you if is going to die if he eats or touches peanuts you have no idea how awful and gut wrenching it is to try and reassure your child while still stressing how serious the risks are. Several weeks ago my son was given a peanut butter milk shake at a movie theater when he asked for a vanilla one. After one sip he realized something was very wrong. Thankfully he was physically o.k. but he was definitely scarred emotionally. He has been having nightmares and is terrified to eat anything without triple checking that it's safe. These parents think it's an inconvenience to have their kids wash their hands! Give me a break...how about being scared everytime you eat out or put food in your mouth and constantly triple checking that you have your epipen. The previous comment is just ignorant. First of all, peanut allergy is neither bizarre or strange. It is becoming increasingly common. Secondly, I should have to home school my child, and not allow him to have a normal healthy childhood like every other child in this country so that kids can eat peanut butter. Since when does a child's "right" to eat peanut butter trump my child's right to go to school without the fear of dying?

    March 28, 2011 at 4:49 pm |
  95. Richard Jennings

    I think that teaching my child to wash their hands three times a day can not be a very bad thing, especially in the times we are in. Do parents not remember the speed that a flu will travel through an elementary school. Also lets not forget the teaching of something called compassion, which I am sure is not a part of the program at many schools in the US, but maybe should be. If this was explained to the students in this school I would bet they would get it, and maybe pick up a little self-esteem from helping someone with a disability. Lets face it children are alot smarter now than when I was in school.

    March 28, 2011 at 4:46 pm |
  96. JoSCh

    We're stifling Darwinism. Alas Babylon.

    March 28, 2011 at 4:45 pm |
  97. Stacie

    If these parents are seriously protesting the fact that their children have to wash their hands twice a day, they need to get some hygiene lessons. Seriously, what a horrible lesson you are teaching your children. So they leave their lunches out of the room and wash their hands. Seems like a pretty small price to pay to not have your child witness a classmate die in front of them. Shame on you for trying to get this child out of the school.

    March 28, 2011 at 4:45 pm |
  98. Pete

    There were only nine adults in the picture. That is probably less than one half of a percent of all the parents of this school. It is unfortunate that the copy writer implied that it was all the parents. There is always a tiny group of people who are mean like this. They do not deserve this much attention.

    I am sure that the children are learning good social skills this way. Perhaps when they grow up, they will be more considerate than these "parents" who want to alienate a little girl because of her allergy.

    I also suspect that the neighbors of these mean people gave them a hard time and that is why they now won't talk to the press.

    March 28, 2011 at 4:44 pm |
  99. Christopher Miles

    While I admire this school for being so compassionate, it's irresponsible for them to make rules that they cannot enforce. It's one thing for the school to mandate behaviors of their staff; if an employee of the school decides to ignore the existing policies the school can take disciplinary action. The behavior of children is not so easily controlled and children who ignore these new rules are putting the life of another child in danger. Putting responsibility on the parents to ensure that their children comply is also unworkable: the parents aren't there during the school day. As we can see by this thread, there are even parents who may not wish their children to comply, again, putting the life of a child in danger.

    It's unfair for a child afflicted with this kind of allergy to have to be so vigilant against contamination and it's unfair that they need to be trained to dose themselves if they do become contaminated. Sadly, this is the best way to ensure their safety. Training school staff to handle a contamination situation is a great second line of defense. Getting other children to obey arbitrary rules strikes me as possibly the least effective method. Perhaps this in response to dodging some kind of legal liability?

    March 28, 2011 at 4:44 pm |
  100. gotallergies

    I refuse to put my child's well-being at risk by subjecting him to public school. His disability isn't a regular physical disability that can be accommodated easily. The school might have ramps for wheelchair-bound students and that takes care of the situation (I am simplifying, of course), but if a student has had peanut butter at home before school and still has residue of it on himself (these are 6 year olds, afterall), he could transfer it to my child.

    If you had a child with an a disease that compromises his immunity, would you enroll him in school? That would be irresponsible. If your child has life-threatening allergies, it is irresponsible to send him to school, too. I know... I homeschool for this exact reason.

    March 28, 2011 at 4:44 pm |
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