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...to be thinking this at this late stage?

(8 Posts)
2468whodoweappreciate Thu 09-Mar-17 01:28:14

My child is due to go away overnight with school tomorrow. She has an allergy that hasn't been severe thus far but could be so has epipens prescribed.

Today her TA suggested I left a 2nd epipen at school generally but specifically for the trip. Thing is, she HAS 2 at school. This has shown me a key member of staff didn't know this critical information. The TA also told me they have only been taking 1 out when going out of school, which has been happening daily of late.

I feel horrified. The school & I drew up a plan when my child was given the epipens, which made things clear where they were kept & they were both to travel with them out & about. I feel I've let my child down by not regularly checking on staff but to do so rubs their backs up as if I'm implying they aren't doing their job right. I feel anxious if the TA didn't know of 2nd epipen, then the countless supply teachers probably haven't either. I realise I need to ensure I don't ever get as assuming again going forward.

In addition to this there was an issue with the actual teacher regarding the exposure to her allergy trigger during the trip. I don't want to go into it much incase it outs me but the teacher wasn't honest on basic information for reasons that completely baffle me, the only thing I can think is that she didn't want to admit she didn't know so made something up. I contacted the destination directly because what the teacher claimed didn't add up & satisfied myself that the exposure risk was controlled.

My AIBU is this. Would it be, that I'm contemplating withdrawing her from the residential trip tm? I don't care about the money I'd lose. My mind is going overdrive this eve considering I'm leaving my child in the care of ppl I've lost trust / faith in. But am I overreacting & how crap would it be on my child to do this balanced against the risk of putting her in the care of these ppl who I don't feel take her allergy as seriously as it needs be? I should add that although the centre has taken all reasonable steps to minimise risk to my child, because of the behaviours I've seen I'm not convinced the school staff themselves might introduce their own allergy risk to the trip as I feel my child's health care plan has not been taken seriously or adhered to as it should've been.

I can't sleep for the feeling of sickness at placing her overnight a fair distance away in the care of ppl who've shown less than the level of care we'd agreed, vs the disappointment if I were to exclude my child because I didn't have time to discuss with the Head before they'd go (the teacher is meeting them straight at the venue tm).

Lone parent so no one to discuss with at this late hour. Particularly keen to hear from other allergy mums / dad's/ etc WWYD?

nursebickypegs Thu 09-Mar-17 01:52:51

As a nurse, it concerns me by the lack of communication regarding the epi-pens. Everyone should know about it, be trained on it and know where they are.

As a human being, I'd like to think this TA made a slip up and maybe she "forgot" or is new perhaps?

I'd definitely raise your concerns to the teachers and the school nurse. Express your concern about the trip and what the TA said. Do it in the morning, and then maybe a friendly reminder in the afternoon. Does your child have an emergency bracelet about their allergy? Can you write a letter that goes with the child?

I don't know how old your child is but I use to babysit for a little boy about 7, who would tell everyone new about his epi-pen. First time I met him, he showed me where it was kept (even though mum showed me earlier). He was a good little egg.

I might be in the minority, but I'd give the TA the benefit of the doubt, raise an emergency meeting tomorrow and still let your little one go on residential.

nursebickypegs Thu 09-Mar-17 01:54:25

Also after this incident; nag the school for Anaphylaxis update training and write a letter to the school nurse about this as well. They should have it every 3 years, or more often with allergies. I carry adrenaline with me even as an off duty nurse.

1Violetcream Thu 09-Mar-17 04:20:32

Hi, sorry this is late, but in case you're still up worrying. I had this exact same thing a few months ago. I could have written your post!!! I stayed up worrying as couple of things showed staff did not have a handle on it. DD was off to France (aka nut allergy central!) leaving 6 am next morning. I pulled her from the trip as my confidence was gone and didn't have time to deal with it in the morning. I could not send her is I didn't have completed trust and confidence in people caring for her. She needs to know and trust that I am secure in staff so that she can be. I was so relieved and happy that I pulled her off the trip. Totally right decision. Not worth the terrible risk. You'd never forgive yourself. Listen to your instincts. But if you have time, ask for meeting before they leave with all those going to go over in detail. I know how tough it is. Sorry you don't have anyone to discuss with. If it helps, when I was awake a 1am fretting, my DH just grunted and went back to sleep!!?!

2468whodoweappreciate Thu 09-Mar-17 06:39:22

Thanks. They've had training, the school nurse comes in every Sept to refresh apparently. The TA is new since then but the school nurse came last wk ahead of the trip to train her. I guess my concerns lay in the detail of how they interpret the care plan. Another example is that I've always sent in a bag of safe treats so when another child brings birthday sweets to hand out my child has one of their safe treats. She's told me a few times this yr her teacher has given her the class treat not one of her own but she's recognised it as a safe label so has accepted it. Thinking back I can't remember when she last had one of her own treats & neither could she last time I asked her, she thought her teacher had lost the bag confused luckily my child is cautious so if in doubt she waits & checks with me before eating but it's the trusts in certain brands that could put her at risk without checking packaging, sometimes allergens can vary between manufacturing sites. A yr 4 can't be expected to tackle this & challenge their teacher & shouldn't have to, she's already self conscious about being different.

My child came in to my bed during the night & said she didn't want to go as she's scared as it's first time away from home alone so she may not be too upset if I pulled her out. It seems so avoidable though if only the staff respected our heath plan & as an experience it would be so good for her. I feel very low this morning about the trip, the school & the way ppl in general undermine the seriousness of allergies! And tired.

1Violetcream Thu 09-Mar-17 08:07:16

I think the responsibility is too much for 9 year old. Mine was 12 and didn't send her. Especially as in foreign country where she couldn't rely on recognising brands etc. I've had same prob with treats too. They either don't give her one which isn't fair or insist that we are secretive about her own stuff?!? Surely the more people and children that know the better?! I say keep her at home and have a relaxing day instead! Particularly if she's not desperate to go. X

nursebickypegs Thu 09-Mar-17 14:39:56

How did it go OP? Now I've read your other post about the treats, I think I wouldn't blame you if you pulled her out.

2468whodoweappreciate Thu 16-Mar-17 18:18:33

She went after I'd made a bit of a do with head & teacher about her meds. I barely slept. She was left out of an activity where everyone had treat food brought by the staff because I hadn't been allowed to check to packing as per the health agreement thingy. This was dispute me asking whether staff were taking any food themselves for the kids & being told no, by the very person who it turns out took it! So much for inclusion.

Meeting soon with school to review health agreement thingy. They are good in some ways yet in others worryingly ignorant/ dismissive.

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