When your kids are getting ready to get enrolled into middle school make sure all of their immunizations are up to date for Oklahoma Law now requires incoming 7th graders to have proof of their TDAP shot.

This vaccine provides a booster against diptheria, tetanus and whooping cough, a disease that can cause students to miss for school for five days.

The Oklahoma State Department of Health believes that this new requirement will help avoid outbreaks of these diseases.

“While Oklahoma has been fortunate thus far in avoiding an outbreak of whooping cough, we did see an increase in the number of cases reported in the state last year,” said State Health Commissioner Dr. Terry Cline. “One hundred seventy cases were reported in 2010 compared to 100 cases in 2009. We are hopeful that this new vaccine requirement will help assure our students, families and communities are protected against this dangerous disease.”

The law took effect during the 2011-2012 school year and there will be no grace period given, with the exception of military children coming from a different which they will be given a 30 day period to receive the immunization.

All new eighth graders and freshmen must provide proof of receiving the immunization. If no proof is presented the school will withhold the student's class schedule and locker assignment until proof is presented.

The only exception to this policy for not getting the child vaccinated are medical, religious or personal reasons.  In that case, it will be necessary to obtain an exemption from the Oklahoma State Department of Health by contacting 405.271.4073.

Once proof of exemption is obtained schools will release lockers and class schedules.

Department of Health officials recommend that incoming sixth graders get the immunization as soon as possible before returning to begin their seventh grade year.

Check-in at LPS middle schools is Tuesday, Aug. 6, for eighth graders; Wednesday, Aug. 7, for seventh graders; and Thursday, Aug. 8, for sixth graders.  Check-in runs from 8-11:15 a.m.

High school check-in is Tuesday, Aug. 6, for seniors; Wednesday, Aug. 7, for juniors; Thursday, Aug. 8, for sophomores; and Friday, Aug. 9, for freshmen.  Check-in runs from 8-11:45 a.m.

Gateway Success Center will hold check-in for all students in grades 9-12 on Wednesday, Aug. 7, from 8-11:15 a.m.

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