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Closed petition Introduce new requirements to protect students with allergies in school

We want the Government to implement legislation to protect children with allergies through mandatory allergy policies, training for school staff, and Individual Healthcare Plans (IHPs) for students with allergies.

More details

In the last few years several children have died from allergic reactions at school, yet there's no specific legal protections for pupils with allergies. We want this to change.

This petition is closed All petitions run for 6 months

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Government responded

This response was given on 23 August 2023

The Department understands concerns about allergies in school. We feel that existing guidance is appropriate. Schools/governing bodies are best placed to make decisions about individual pupils.

The Department for Education understands that allergies can be complex and worrying for parents.

Given the complexity, and individual nature, of children’s food allergies, head teachers, school governors and their caterers are best placed to make decisions about their allergy-handling policies, that consider individual circumstances.

The statutory guidance for schools, Supporting Pupils with Medical Conditions, makes clear that schools should ensure they are aware of any pupils with allergies and have processes in place to ensure these can be well managed. Parents should be fully consulted and engaged in any discussions in relation to their child’s allergies.

Furthermore, the Department for Education’s guidance to schools on allergies includes links to requirements on caterers to provide allergen information on their products. The Department of Health and Social Care also provides guidance on schools’ use of adrenaline auto-injectors and emergency asthma inhalers. Departmental advice and guidance is available on gov.uk.

While we keep these policies under review, and welcome feedback on how we better support schools’ implementation of them, the Government believes the existing mix of national requirements and local flexibility is appropriate for this complex issue.

Department for Education