The School Forms You Need Before Your Child with Food Allergies Starts School

 

Are you getting ready to send your child with food allergies off to school? Whether it is your child's first year in school or the sixth, you must send in new forms every year.

Here is our checklist of the forms you need to finish before the first day. Get copies of these forms from the school. These forms will need your doctor's authorization or signature.

✓ Medication Authorization

These forms state if your child can self-carry and/or self-administer medications at school. These forms are required even if the medication will be stored and given by school staff.

These forms give the school permission to give medicine, such as epinephrine, to your child.

Keep in mind that self-carry and self-administration are two different decisions. If the school forms do not allow you and your doctor to make a choice, ask about changing it to fit your child's needs.

✓ Emergency Action Plan

This form tells caregivers what to do in case of an allergic emergency.

It describes your child’s symptoms and dose of medication. Include a photo of your child. Make sure your contact information is up to date.

✓ Special Dietary Meals Accommodation

You need this form if your child will eat meals provided by school. If you are making this request, your doctor will fill out an eating and feeding evaluation form. Partner with your school nurse and food service director so your child has safe food choices. See the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Guidance for School Food Service Staff for Accommodating Children with Special Dietary Needs in the School Nutrition ProgramsDownload PDFfor more information. The USDA oversees school lunch programs.

Other Things to Keep in Mind

Work with the school to create a comprehensive Food Allergy Management and Prevention Plan. This is typically either an Individual Health Plan (IHP) or 504 Plan. These are detailed plans that list how the school will accommodate your child's food allergy. These must be renewed every year; deadlines vary. If you started the process of getting one, stay on top of communication with the school.

What to Do Next?

Originally published July 2016, updated August 2017

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