Grab & Go Breakfast and Life Threatening Allergies

  1. Hi everyone! I was wondering if anyone had any information or experience with this topic? The school will be starting Grab & Go Breakfast as required by the district this year. We have several students with life threatening allergies and the parents have (legitimate) concerns about this. A group of parents would like to meet with me about the program. We are starting our inservice week soon, so once I have access to records, I can learn a little more about the kids prior to meeting with the parents, but I wanted to prepare before scheduling. My thought was to meet and brainstorm foods that can be safely served, possibly only served in the cafeteria (which I think kind of defeats the grab and go purpose, but might be the safest way to implement it), suggest concerns be brought to the school board. Any thoughts or suggestions? Thank you so much!
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  2. 11 Comments

  3. by   OldDude
    Explain a little more about grab and go. Are you talking about eating breakfast in the classrooms instead of the cafeteria?
  4. by   ILoveScrubs924
    Yes, that's what I understand of the program. With the range of allergies, the only thing I can really think of is serving fruit. Seems like a win-win, since it's healthy and doesn't cause issues for the kids with allergies. I don't know how you can prevent exposure with kids walking down a hall eating what I'm going to assume to be snack type foods (granola bars, muffins, etc). My other solution was to suggest they go to the school board with other families across the district and express their concern.
  5. by   KKEGS
    What grade level?
  6. by   ILoveScrubs924
    Middle School, 6-8.
  7. by   3peas
    Our students eat in the classroom, but it is distributed in the classroom. Dietary still plans menus around student's dietary needs. Our district plans menus 3 months out, so I can access it and present to parents if they ask. We do more than snack foods, we have cereal, pancake roll up things, burritos, bars, muffins, all sorts of glorious frozen delights. I have teachers leaving milk out ALL day and giving it out at dismissal

    Dietary should consider allergies when providing breakfast, not sure why they wouldn't. Could they possibly have a separate bin to pull from? Are you student's with allergies avoidance or that reactive they can't be around it at all?
    Last edit by 3peas on Aug 16 : Reason: needed to add something
  8. by   ILoveScrubs924
    I just gained access to the clinic today. I know of three with life threatening allergies, one who is airborne (student is picked up during lunch and dropped off when it's over). I haven't seen the incoming student's IHP yet, but the student's mom would like to meet with me at the same time as the third child's mom, so I'm pretty sure I know what's coming. I can certainly understand the issue they have with the safety of their child. The allergy isn't just to nuts....the two I've seen also include milk, eggs, wheat, and a couple of other things that would be far easier to avoid. I don't think the issue is their student would have to skip the breakfast, it's that the program is being implemented at all.

    The school has yet to hammer out the details of how they plan to implement the program, so I really have no additional information to give when we meet. I'm not sure what other options that will leave, aside from the parents making some noise with district administrators and attempting to provide foods that don't contain allergens. Perhaps they have some other brands to recommend for quick grab and go foods? Even if they eat in the classroom, it's middle school, so they are changing rooms, and I imagine a lot of instructional time would be lost with every child in the class washing hands, wiping down desks, etc.

    I'll schedule a time to meet with Admin and Guidance to see what we can collectively come up with in regards to the program. I am very lucky to have a great team to work with.

    Haha, thank you so much 3peas, it sounds exactly like I imagined it to be...not nutritious, nor delicious!
  9. by   Jolie
    You mention 2 students with milk/egg/wheat allergies. I don't mean to minimize your concern for the safety of these children, but I question how grab & go breakfast would be any more dangerous for them than the occasional donut day or classroom birthday treat that they probably endured all the way thru elementary school.

    Unless these kids are believed to be at risk for anaphylaxis from skin contact with these proteins, what precautions are needed, other than to make certain that they are offered alternative foods?
  10. by   OldDude
    So, what is the rationale for NOT eating in the cafeteria? There is no way you can come close to providing a safe environment for those with food allergies when all types of foods are allowed willy-nilly throughout the campus. That policy is NOT the industry standard and, to me, sounds like a blank check to be handed out to a potential "victim's" parents; i.e., conscious negligence.
  11. by   Kooky Korky
    Does anyone eat at home any more?

    What is the real goal of Grab and Go? Is there a charge for the food in this program?

    Will teachers now have to be concerned about choking hazards in the classroom or hallways?
  12. by   OldDude
    Quote from Kooky Korky
    Does anyone eat at home any more?

    What is the real goal of Grab and Go? Is there a charge for the food in this program?

    Will teachers now have to be concerned about choking hazards in the classroom or hallways?
    No, it's all about reimbursement, and yes
  13. by   grammy1
    We have grab and go, along with the high schools and have for a few years. Kids can pick up sausage biscuits, yogurt, etc., and take it to the classroom (early...before school starts) for tutoring, clubs, extra help, etc. No peanut products are served, but we've never had a problem. Are the parents worried about their kids being served an allergen, or being near it? If they're eating in the cafeteria, they're still being exposed to wheat, eggs, etc. Our cafeteria computer program has alerts set up when a student makes a purchase to show what their allergen is.

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