Immunization alert for parents and guardians of incoming seventh grade students.
As a result of new immunization rules by The Tennessee Department of Health, all incoming seventh grade students will require two new immunizations and a new Official Immunization Certificate before attending school this coming school year.
The immunizations are: Tdap and Varicella, and must be received prior to school attendance.
The Varicella immunization will not be required if verification of previous Chicken Pox can be provided.
These required immunizations will not be available at school. The immunizations and the Official Immunization Certificate will only be available from a private healthcare provider or the local health department.
Please note that old immunization certificates will no longer be accepted and the newer Official Immunization Certificate showing proof of immunizations must be provided to the school nurse at the start of school in August 2013 in order for a student to attend seventh grade.
Any questions regarding the state requirements should be referred to your private healthcare provider, the local health department, or the school nurse at the school where your child will be attending.
So why do 7th graders need the shots?
Smokey chats with Dana Holt, RN, BSN Coordinator Robertson County School Nursing Services
Why are varicella and Tdap required for 7th Grade entry? First, it was mandated by the Department of Health starting back in 2010, so these newer guidelines have been around for 3 years now.
Secondly, over the last several years it was noted that there were increased cases of Whooping Cough across the United States. Therefore, the Department of Health determined that at approximately 7th grade, a Tdap booster would be necessary to provide the needed protection from the disease.
Tdap actually immunizes against Tetanus, Diphtheria, and Pertussis (Whooping Cough). Lastly, a second Varicella is needed to provide protection from Chicken Pox. This requirement came about through the Department of Health as well as a result of determining that the varicella vaccine given at a young age was not lasting long enough to protect the teenage years.
If a child has already had chicken pox, then the second dose of Varicella is not required, but the Health Care Provider must document proof of disease on the TN Immunization Form.
The newer TN Immunization Certificate from the Department of Health also went into effect in 2010 for 7th Grade entry, so documentation of the above must be provided on the newer form. These forms can only be obtained from the student’s Health Care Provider or the local Health Department.
Keep a copy of the school calendar for this coming 2013-2014 year, along with the school lunchroom prices.
Make sure and check the meal prices as they have changed since last year. They are as follows:
Meal Prices: Breakfast/Lunch
Elementary School $ 1.00 $ 2.25
Middle School $ 1.00 $ 2.50
High School $ 1.00 $ 2.75
Student – Reduced $ .30 $ .40
Staff Member $ 2.25 $ 3.50
Visitor Adult $ 2.50 $ 4.00
Visitor Child $ 1.75 $ 3.00
August 8 and the first day of school is not far away. Enjoy the remainder of your summer.
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