Your 7th grade student needs vaccines, or they can't go to school

By: Allison Kropff Email
By: Allison Kropff Email

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - You have just 2 days to make sure your student is vaccinated or they won't be allowed back to school.

All seventh graders must have their Tdap and chicken pox vaccinations by October 1st.

As health officials tell us, it's not just for your child's safety, it's also for the safety of others.

It is now required every student entering 7th grade must have a Tdap, Diptheria, Tetanus, Pertussis and a 2nd Varicella, or chicken pox vaccine before October 1st.

"Children who have not been vaccinated, come Friday, will not be able to return to school until they've received the required vaccines," says Pamela Workman, with the Knox County Health Department.

The Friday deadline is an extension from the original deadline of July 1st, but still hundreds of students have yet to get vaccinated.

1,038 students out of 4200 in Knox County Schools still need their shots.

138 of 612 students in Anderson County still need theirs.

"It's important so that they have protection against these diseases. Not only for themselves, but for people at home, younger siblings," says Workman.

Your child can get vaccinated at their primary care physician or at the local health department.

"They can get the health department to vaccinate them, free of charge, if they're 18 or under, and we will issue a certificate of vaccination," says Workman.

That certificate of verification is needed for students to be allowed in school.

Health officials want you to know, schools aren't trying to keep your kids out, they're trying to keep your kids healthy.

"This is your best protection against these diseases and if you don't get vaccinated then you're at risk," says Workman.

There are medical and religious exemptions, but you still need to turn in paperwork for both.

For more information about the vaccinations, click on the link below.

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