Sorry if this has been covered before, but I have a question for the school nurses out about vaccines.
As we all know, the effectiveness of vaccines relies on having all or most of the population immunized. Like any med, there are risks, no matter how remote. The parents who choose not to immunize their children bank on others taking that risk thereby almost eliminating diseases like polio, pertussis, measles, etc. So the kid not immunized enjoys the benefits of the group's immunity, but does not accept the risks of the vaccine.
Back in the dark-ages when I was a child, the school nurse checked each and every child for proof of vaccines. If a kid's vaccines weren't perfectly up-to-date, that kid didn't return to school until they were.
So, what is the policy at your school? Or, your state or county? Are kids allowed in the classroom who aren't immunized?
Hmm. I've never heard anyone from any state relay to me that there is a 'personal' objection. There is a considerable difference between "Well it was just their 'personal' decision to not complete the recommended vaccination schedule for little Sarah." or "Research and reflection led one family to decide to delay vaccinations until the age of 4, and then to specifically choose single vaccinations in order to protect their child." (*Which is btw, a parental obligation and expectation.)
I believe it is in most cases entitled, "philosophical (or personal conviction), medical, or religious" descriptions for exemption.
What is very odd to me is how few families actually even know about the ability to get an exemption, and the myriad of complete myths and repulsive insults and comments surrounding the children and families who do make that choice.
The greater good is not black and white. There are substantial justifiable reasons to consider an exemption for some families and/or their children some of which Jolie outlined very clearly in her post.
And, of those two governmental directives -- the one about educating the child, can be attained in an other-than-public-school setting, with quality results. If they choose to have their children be part of the public school districts, then they must adhere to the law. One certainly hopes that the school nurse, and family doctor are examples of those a family would seek advice from.
But, having done that - as long as there are thoughtful ways provided to gain exemption...(*ways I might add which historically involve the 'public' community, legal authority and moral considerations all used in order to sculpt the laws regarding vaccinations), it should be accepted and respected.
I'm highly impressed when I see families who inform themselves, and make deliberate choices individually about and for each of the children in their family. They are not really the families we should be worried about.
Last edit by Autymn on May 17, '12
My state requires students to be vaccinated per the guidlines.....the exceptions are:
1) Medical reason-ie immune system issues/allergy to certain vaccines etc
2) Religious exemption-paperwork must be on file at the Superintendants office and a copy in my file
3) According to the McKenny-Vento Act re homeless students (Federal Law)
They may enroll regardless of Iz status but have 30 days to produce documentation or beging the series over.
The caveat of all this is the district reserves the right to exclude a student in the event of an outbreak (pertussis etc)
Philisophical/Personal Exemption is not recognized in my state.
Students are not allowed to start classes without written proof. If they are under immunized they can begin but have 30 days to obtain what they need.
At the HS level is is usally the Tdap and a second Varicella is what is needed to get them up to speed.
Last edit by NutmeggeRN on May 18, '12