Living With Food Allergies

What School Forms Do I Need If My Child Has Food Allergies?

If your child has a food allergy, you will need to submit forms to your child’s school for managing their condition, giving medicines, and handling allergic reactions and emergencies. These forms are important to help keep your child healthy at school.

Depending on your school’s policies, these forms may be part of your child’s school health care plan. Or they may be used alone. Regardless, you will also need to fill out and submit a new set of signed forms each year.

Over the summer before a new school year, get copies of these forms from your child’s school or district. Visit your child’s doctor to get these forms signed. Schedule the appointment at least three to four weeks before the first day of school so the doctor’s office has enough time to sign them. Submit the forms to the school before the first day so they can prepare.

Your child’s school or district may require that you use their version of these forms. If they don’t, your child’s doctor may have standard forms they use.

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Medicine Authorization Form

If your child can self-carry and/or self-administer their epinephrine auto-injector at school, they will need a medicine authorization form. If they also have asthma, they will need one for their quick-relief medicine too.

These forms are required even if the school staff stores and gives the medicine. This form allows your child to have medicine in their belongings, and/or gives the school permission to give medicine to your child.

You will need to decide if your child is ready to self-carry and/or self-administer their epinephrine. These are two different decisions. Your child’s doctor can help you decide what’s best for your child.

For example, your child may be ready to carry their own epinephrine, but they may need an adult to give it to them. Other children may be developmentally ready and prepared to take their own medicine. But during an emergency, they may need assistance. If the school form does not allow you and your doctor to make a choice between self-carry and self-administration, ask about changing the forms.

Every state has laws that allow your child to carry their own medicine.

Anaphylaxis Action Plan

If your child is allergic to certain foods, medicines, insects, or latex, they may be at risk for a severe allergic reaction (anaphylaxis). They need an Anaphylaxis Action Plan. This plan has information about your child’s allergy, what symptoms to watch for, and what to do in an emergency. It will also include important contact information.

If your child does not have an Anaphylaxis Action Plan, ask their doctor for one. Give a copy to the school, their teachers, and other key staff. Make sure your contact information is up to date. You may also want to include a photo of your child.

Asthma Action Plan

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Many children with food allergies also have asthma. If your child has asthma, they also need a written Asthma Action Plan. This plan has information and instructions on how to manage asthma. It includes:

  • Medicine instructions
  • Recognizing when your child’s symptoms get worse
  • What to do in an emergency

If your child does not have an Asthma Action Plan, ask their doctor for one. Give a copy to the school, their teachers, and other key staff. Include a photo of your child. Make sure your contact information is up to date.

Special Dietary Meals Accommodation Form

You will need this form if your child has food allergies and will be eating meals provided by the school. Talk with the school nurse and the food services director about safe food choices for your child. See the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Accommodating Children with Disabilities in the School Meal ProgramsDownload PDF for more information. The USDA oversees school lunch programs.

Ask your child’s school or district for new forms each year. Then make an appointment with your child’s doctor to fill them out and sign them. Start this process in the spring or summer so you have plenty of time to get them on file with your child’s school before the first day.

 

Created August 2021

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