Tracy Michele: Hi! I'm Tracy Michele with the National Association of Health Underwriters Education Foundation.
Today, we're talking about the various school and childcare requirements for vaccination. While no federal vaccination laws exist, all 50 states have laws regulating vaccinations schedules for children in public schools and childcare services. These requirements differ slightly form state to state, but recent preventable outbreaks among school age children have caused the resurgence of vaccination enforcement in many communities.
Children are required to have updated immunizations before entering childcare, kindergarten and middle school. Most states also require and update before students rule in college. If you change your child from a private school or a home school to a public school, all immunizations must be correct, no matter what grade your child is entering. Always keep your child's most current immunizations records on hand especially if you move to a new school district, as school records can easily be lost and personal documents might take awhile to unpack.
Parents who do not comply with vaccination laws can face steep fines and even jail time. But it is their children who really suffer, as they're not able to attend school and may even be placed in quarantine. All states provide exemptions for medical reasons and Mississippi is the only state that doesn't provide exemptions for either religious or philosophical beliefs.
Visit the Centers for Disease Control and Preventions online database at cdc.
gov for a list of state vaccination requirements and talk to your healthcare provider to help determine what immunizations your child might need.