Back-to-School Food Allergy Plans

Do you have a food-allergic child that’s getting ready to start school? Even before school begins, it is important that you contact your child’s school and inform them of the scope and nature of your child’s allergies. The more the school knows, the better prepared they will be to assist in keeping your child safe and allergy-free at school.

Back-to-School Food Allergy Plans

Here are some basic steps to get started:

  1. Contact the school and schedule a time to meet with the appropriate authority (which may include the principal, teacher, school nurse, and/or cafeteria director). Come to your meeting prepared with supporting information. Check out for a sample Food Allergy And Anaphylaxis Emergency Care Plan. You can complete the form in advance and have your physician sign it. The school can then keep a copy of the plan on file.
  2. Meet with your child’s teacher. A number of challenges can crop up in the classroom in regard to food allergies. What happens when food-based incentives (like an ice cream or pizza party) could make your child sick? What about when holiday or birthday treats are not safe for your child? How can the classroom be managed so that your child does not feel isolated or different? Do special arrangements need to be made for lunchroom seating? Give your child’s teacher information and resources to prepare for needed adjustments.

The Food Allergy Resources and Education website has a wealth of information for you and your child’s school. Many of the materials were developed in collaboration with the Centers for Disease Control. Some are geared just for educators such as a teacher checklist for dealing with food-allergic kids. There is also information for managing kids’ allergies during field trips and even during emergencies such as while sheltering in place. As they say, knowledge is power. Offer these resources to school officials to help them provide your child with a safe and happy school experience.

Also remember that if food allergies are significantly affecting your child’s quality of life, there are treatment options available for wheat allergy, milk allergy, nut allergy, and more through sublingual immunotherapy (oral allergy drops). Talk to your physician about prescribing a sublingual immunotherapy treatment program for your child.

About The Author

Stuart H. Agren, M.D.

Stuart H. Agren, M.D. completed his undergraduate studies at the University of Utah and went on to earn his Doctor of Medicine from Tulane University School of Medicine in 1974. He completed additional training at L.D.S. Hospital in Salt Lake City, Utah and then established his private medical practice starting in 1975. Dr. Agren completed a mini-residency in Industrial Medicine at the Robert Johnson School of Medicine at Rutgers University and also completed training to become a certified Medical Review Officer.

Dr. Agren was the Medical Director at TRW and McDonnell Douglas in Mesa, Arizona and at Stauffer Chemical and Kennecott Copper in Salt Lake City, Utah. He also served as an adjunct faculty member at Arizona State University.

In his private medical practice, Dr. Agren specialized in family practice and allergy. In his work as a private practice allergist, he was one of the first doctors in the country to prescribe sublingual immunotherapy to his patients as an alternative to subcutaneous immunotherapy (allergy shots). He has also been a trailblazer in the field of food allergy treatment and research, developing a program to treat multiple food allergies simultaneously using sublingual immunotherapy. Dr. Agren has been featured on local CBS, NBC, and ABC news affiliates and won the peer-nominated “Top Doc” award from Phoenix Magazine.

After 20 years in private practice, Dr. Agren became the Founder and President of AllergyEasy, which helps primary care physicians around the country offer allergy testing and sublingual immunotherapy treatment to their patients. Over 200 physicians in over 32 states use the AllergyEasy program to help their patients overcome environmental and food allergies and asthma.