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Special Dietary Needs

Special Dietary Needs

Upon registration the parent will be provided a copy of the Request for Food Allergy Information Form to provide them with an opportunity to disclose whether their child has a food allergy or severe food allergy.  

A Food Allergy is a hypersensitivity from an abnormal response of the body’s immune system to food or food additives that would otherwise be considered harmless. Many of the true food allergy symptoms often resemble allergic reactions to other substances, such as penicillin, drugs, bee stings, hives, and itching.  Anaphylaxis is a rare but potentially fatal condition in which several different parts of the body experience food-allergic reactions at the same time. Symptoms may progress rapidly and include severe itching, hives, sweating, swelling of the throat, breathing difficulties, lowered blood pressure, unconsciousness, and even death.

If the parent indicates that the child has a severe food allergy (food anaphylaxis) on their form, they will be given a letter with instructions on how they can assist the school in developing an Individualized Health Care Plan for their child and two forms that they will need to have their child’s doctor complete.  

The first form is the “Eating and Feeding Evaluation: Special Dietary Needs” form. This form is for children who require substitutions or modifications to school meals because of the restrictions associated with their disability.  It would be completed for a child with a disability as defined under either Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act or Part B of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act or for a child with a severe food allergy whose physician certifies that the child’s food allergy may result in a severe, life-threatening (anaphylactic) reaction.  This form must be completed by the child’s doctor.

The second form is the “Allergy Health Care Action Plan”. The purpose of this form is to assist the staff in addressing an allergic reaction.  

Once the school has received the Eating and Feeding Evaluation form, the school will review the form for the required information, and a 504 or ARD committee meeting may then be scheduled to develop an Individual Education Plan to address the child’s special meal requirements. The Alvarado ISD Child Nutrition Department will be present at the ARD or 504 meeting to assist in the development of the IEP. Once the IEP is developed, a copy of the IEP and Eating and Feeding Evaluation form will be placed in the cafeteria along with an allergy information card that will be completed by the CN Director. The Allergy Health Care Action Plan will be given to the school nurse. If a child has a food allergy, the school will only be able to make substitutions or modifications to the child’s meal when the child’s allergy is properly documented by a physician as being a severe food allergy (food anaphylaxis) and approved by the ARD or 504 committee.