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IMMUNIZATION INFORMATION FOR INCOMING 7th GRADE STUDENTS

What is the tetanus and pertussis booster requirement?

  • All students entering, advancing or transferring into 7th grade need proof of an adolescent tetanus and whooping cough booster immunization (called “Tdap”).

What is Tdap and what are the diseases that the Tdap vaccine prevents?

Tdap is a booster vaccine for older children, adolescents, and adults. It safely protects against 3 dangerous diseases: tetanus, diphtheria, and whooping cough (also called pertussis).

  • Pertussis – also known as whooping cough, is a contagious disease that causes violent coughing fits that make it hard to breathe. It spreads easily when someone with the disease coughs or sneezes. The symptoms can last for months. Whooping cough is particularly dangerous for young babies.
  • Tetanus – causes a severe, painful tightening (spasms) of muscles, including of the jaw (‘lockjaw’), which can limit swallowing and breathing.
  • Diphtheria – is a throat infection that can lead to breathing problems, paralysis, heart failure and death.

Do ALL 7th grade students need to get the pertussis immunization?

Yes. Unless they have an exemption, all students going into 7th grade must have proof of having had the Tdap booster shot. This includes current students, new students and transfer students in both public and private schools. Many students have already received the vaccine and simply need to supply proof to the school, so check with your doctor or provider.

Why is the Tdap vaccine required?

This requirement will help protect your child and others in your school and community from whooping cough. Whooping cough is a serious disease that causes coughing fits that can last for months. In recent years, whooping cough has been increasing in the United States.

Why does my child need Tdap?

In addition to it being a requirement for school, children who get a Tdap booster shot will be better protected during their school years. Immunization also helps to protect others within the home, in the community, and at school. Students affected by whooping cough can become very sick and parents may miss work and lose wages to care for their sick children.

PRESCRIPTION MEDICATION IN THE MIDDLE SCHOOL

Middle school students may carry and administer their own medications under most circumstances. Any students requiring supervision must deposit their medication in the nurse's office along with a copy of the physician's order and signed medication authorization form