Wait! It Gets Even Better…

Yesterday I posted about the cognitive dissonance displayed by our daughter’s teacher on Valentine’s Day. Never mind food allergies, she violated school district policy by having the children do a an art project with candy.

I have learned that she actually had sought and had received permission from the school principal, who is no softy when it comes to enforcing the district’s “no sweets” policy. The principal admitted this and plead a lapse in judgment.

I have also learned about a few other incidents.

Chinese culture = fortune cookies?
For Chinese New Year, the teacher had brought in fortune cookies. Unlike the Valentine’s craft, this was done without advance permission of anyone, and in violation of the district’s policies. While the items were sealed and so long as they remained sealed likely posed no physical threat to our daughter, they needlessly provided yet another reminder that she’s different from other children.

What was the point of handing out fortune cookies anyway? Was it just a celebratory gesture? Perhaps she actually believes fortune cookies are educational, representing a genuine staple of Chinese culture.

Best student to carry the EpiPen is a future felon
I won’t go into detail about the time the teacher chose to ask a classmate to hold our daughter’s EpiPen when they were headed to a field trip, a classmate who is (in our opinion) destined for a life of incarceration. When we asked why she didn’t just have our daughter hold it she said she couldn’t entrust it to a 2nd grader when THAT’S EXACTLY WHAT SHE DID.

Best place to host a cooking class is in the room of the student with a 504 plan
This was something else altogether, and not the teacher’s fault. Among the after-school programs available at the school, one is a “No Bake Cooking” class. Guess which classroom it’s held in? That’s right – in our daughter’s classroom.

Are you kidding me? Who’s in charge here? All the classrooms on campus and you’ve got to hold it in THAT one?

The only reason we even know this is one day at the end of the school day our daughter had noticed them setting up with jars of peanut butter (they were going to make granola that day) and mentioned it to Amy recently.

Amy raised this issue along with the Valentine crafts and was assured that since that day with the peanut butter, there’s now a student in the cooking class who also has a nut allergy, so they won’t use peanut butter any more.

Amy asked, what about mayonnaise? A sticky substance containing eggs, to which our daughter’s allergic. They hadn’t thought of that.

How about instead of ticking off safe and unsafe foods they just move it to a different classroom?!

Yes, they all agreed that’s better.

Bottom line: Counting on others to adhere to their own stated policies is a leap of faith
Your best bet for staying safe is self reliance.

That’s why most parents of children with food allergies don’t dine out much.

That’s also why we and most of the other serious specialty food allergy brands out there would never dream of using a co-packer.

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About Tom

Tom Anichini owns Egg-Free Epicurean along with his wife, Amy Jones Anichini, who founded the business in 2009. Tom is an actuary and an investment professional. He holds an MBA in Finance from the Chicago Booth School of Business and a BS in Actuarial Science from the University of Illinois. He is also a CFA charter holder and an Associate of the Society of Actuaries. He lives in San Diego with his wife and two daughters.
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