Sumner County Student Draws Attention to Food Allergies
by Emily Luxen
GALLATIN, Tenn. - A Sumner County middle school student is helping pave the way for a school district policy geared towards food allergies.
Eleven-year-old Station Camp Middle School student, Tyler Edwards, has a severe peanut and tree nut allergy. Any contact with either will result in a serious reaction.
"It's very serious for me," said Tyler. "It's life or death."
Because of Tyler, and a growing number of students in the district with food allergies, the school board is considering a new policy. It would ensure students with food allergies have an individual health plan developed by the school nurse. The student's teachers, bus driver and cafeteria manager would also be aware of the situation, and how to treat a reaction. Peanut free tables will also be made available in all school cafeterias.
"I feel safe knowing that everybody knows we have the same game plan," said Tyler's mom Tammy Edwards. "Now, we are on the same page. If something happens they know what to do."
Tyler Edwards has also taken his cause to the Tennessee state capitol. He is hoping to encourage lawmakers to pass a bill that would ensure an Epi-pen is kept at every school to help treat allergic reactions.
"We are trying to make sure kids with food allergies don't have to sit in the office alone and eat lunch," said Tyler. "They should be able to sit in the cafeteria with all their friends."
The Sumner County School Board will vote on the proposed policy at the December 4 board meeting. If passed, it will go into effect immediately.
Statistics show 400,000 school age children have peanut allergies.