Nut Free Policy

http://images.huffingtonpost.com/2013-08-01-NutFreeZone2.JPGWe recognize that food allergies can cause serious, life threatening conditions for some children.  To keep all our children safe, the  Child Enrichment Center will aim to eliminate those foods that have been determined to cause allergic reactions in children.  We cannot guarantee a completely nut-free environment since other activities and programs occur at The Shul within the preschool space outside of school hours.  We will, however, maintain a no-nut environment in our classrooms during preschool hours.

Parents will provide the snacks and lunches served to the children in the classrooms and on special occasions (such as birthdays).  No snacks or lunches which contain nuts or indicate that they were manufactured in a plant using nuts will be served in the school.Additional precautions will be taken in the classrooms to minimize the risk of incidental contact to nuts.  Classroom materials not intended for consumption (e.g. art activities, sensory table materials, science and math materials, etc.) may not contain nuts or indicate that they were manufactured in a plant using nuts.  The classroom tables will be wiped down with a bleach solution at the following times:  prior to children arriving in the classroom, after any food is eaten by the children, and at the end of the classroom session.  Children and staff must wash their hands upon arrival at school, before snack, and whatever other times are deemed necessary based on the activity performed. Staff will maintain awareness in the The Shul common areas for any nut issues during preschool hours.Education and awareness about allergies will be promoted within the preschool.  Child Enrichment Center staff may complete annual epi pen and allergy awareness training at the beginning of each school year.  The completion of this training will be documented in their staff files.  For the protection of the children, a list of children with allergies will be posted in each classroom.  “No nuts” signs will be posted in each classroom.  We will also send at least one letter home to parents providing allergy-related information and links to additional educational resources available on the internet (e.g., FAAN).  Additional letters may be sent home to remind parents of this policy if necessary.

Parents of a child with a food allergy must complete a Food Allergy Plan which includes identification of the allergy, signs to watch for in case of reactions, and procedures to follow in case of reaction.  Parents must meet with the teachers prior to the start of the school year to discuss the specifics of their child’s plan.  A copy of the plan (signed by the parents, teachers, and physician where applicable) will be kept in the child’s classroom and in the student’s file in the Director’s office.  Each student with a diagnosed food allergy must have a physician’s authorization for any medication to be administered to help counteract any possible allergic reactions.  Parents must provide the medication, with its original label, to the Child Enrichment Center for administration to their child.

Parental involvement, however, is still important.  All parents should maintain awareness at after-hours or off-site preschool programs where parents are present, such as birthday parties and play dates, which are not covered by this policy.