Allergy affects at least one-quarter of European schoolchildren, it reduces quality of life and may impair school performance; there is a risk of severe reactions and, in rare cases, death. Allergy is a multi-system disorder, and children often have several co-existing diseases, i.e. allergic rhinitis, asthma, eczema and food allergy. Severe food allergy reactions may occur for the first time at school, and overall 20% of food allergy reactions occur in schools. Up to two-thirds of schools have at least one child at risk of anaphylaxis but many are poorly prepared. A cooperative partnership between doctors, community and school nurses, school staff, parents and the child is necessary to ensure allergic children are protected. Schools and doctors should adopt a comprehensive approach to allergy training, ensuring that all staff can prevent, recognize and initiate treatment of allergic reactions.