Food Allergy Awareness
The first responsibility of all of our schools is to ensure that every student is educated in a setting that is safe and conducive to learning. Westfield has adopted a policy for managing students with food allergies. This policy describes the guidelines and best practices for accommodating students with severe food allergies. As a result of the increase in the number of students who have severe food allergies in our schools, we continue to reflect on and refine our practice to create a space where all students can enjoy school in a safe environment.
Food allergy is a growing public health issue that impacts almost every school across the United States. Nearly 6 million children in the U.S. – which equates to 1 in 13, or roughly 2 in every classroom – have a food allergy.
Studies indicate that 16-18% of school-age children who have food allergies have had a reaction in school. In addition, in approximately 25% of the reactions that occur at school, the student had not yet been diagnosed with food allergy.1
1. Administration of Epinephrine for Life-Threatening Allergic Reactions in School Settings. CL Mcintyre, AH Sheetz, CR Carroll, MC Young. Pediatrics. Vol. 116, No. 5. Nov. 2005