Changes to State Immunization Rules for Schools and Child Cares Effective August 1, 2020
The State Board of Health (SBOH) has approved changes to Chapter 246-105 of the Washington Administrative Code (WAC) concerning school and child care immunization policy. These rules apply to all public and private schools and licensed child care centers in Washington State.
The update to Chapter 246-105 WAC has three major focuses:
- It now requires medically verified immunization records for school and child care entry.
- It clarifies conditional status in regards to school and child care immunization requirements and implementation.
- It changes the Tdap immunization requirement to seventh through 12th grades.
There are other small changes to the rule. Read the full rule.
Medically Verified Records
Starting on August 1, 2020, the revised rule requires medically verified immunization records for school and child care entry. Medically verified record includes one or more of the following:
- A Certificate of Immunization Status (CIS) printed from the Immunization Information System (IIS)
- A physical copy of the CIS form with a healthcare provider signature
- A physical copy of the CIS with accompanying medical immunization records from a healthcare provider verified and signed by school staff
- A CIS printed from MyIR
- Download a copy of the CIS
Starting on August 1, 2020, the revised rule grants children conditional status entry into school or child care who are making progress towards completing their immunization requirements. Children may begin school or child care only if they received all of the required immunizations they are due to receive and submitted medically verified records on or before the first day of attendance.
If additional immunizations are needed after receiving all immunizations they are eligible to receive before starting school, children may start school or child care in conditional status and remain until the next dose becomes due. Children will then have 30 calendar days to turn in updated records showing they received the missing dose. If additional doses are due, conditional status continues until all required immunizations are complete. If the 30 days expire without updated records, the child must be excluded from further attendance.
Change to Tetanus, Diphtheria, and Pertussis (Tdap) Vaccine Requirement
As of August 1, 2020, the Tdap school requirement has changed to 7th grade to better align with the updated 2019 national immunization schedule. In the past, the Tdap booster was required starting at 6th grade. For the 2023-24 school year, all students attending grades 7 through 12 must have had one booster dose of Tdap vaccine. All students in seventh through tenth grade must have received their Tdap vaccine dose on or after age 10 to be accepted for school entry. Students in eleventh through twelfth grades must have received their Tdap dose on or after age seven to be accepted for school entry.
Vaccinations required by Washington state law for school attendance
Washington state law requires school age children to receive specific immunizations in order to attend school. Lake Washington School District works with the Washington State Department of Health to comply with state laws on required vaccinations.
Washington state law RCW 28A.210.080 requires that all children show proof of immunization or certification of exemption to attend school. Students cannot start school without the required documentation.
Certificate of Immunization Status (CIS) and Certificate of Exemption (COE) forms
All students must have a completed certificate of immunization status (CIS) (Spanish) or certificate of exemption (COE) form on file in the school office. Parents/guardians must complete the form and turn it in to the school before the student can start school. Students will not be assigned to classes until the information has been turned in with the vaccines required for school attendance documented.
Vaccines required for school attendance
Schedule your child's vaccination appointments well in advance of the new school year to ensure that your child has received all the vaccines required for school attendance.
Vaccine: Hepatitis B
Requirement: Three doses are required for kindergarten through 12th grade students.
diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis (whooping cough)
Requirement: Five doses are required for kindergarten through 12th grade students. (Four doses only if fourth dose given on or after fourth birthday.)
Requirement: Required for seventh through 12th grade students.
Students entering seventh grade must submit proof of vaccine on CIS form.
Vaccine: Varicella (Chickenpox)
Requirement: Two doses are required for kindergarten through 12th grade students (or Healthcare provider verified disease).
Requirement: Four doses are required for kindergarten through 12th grade students. Three doses only if third dose given on or after fourth birthday.
Vaccine: Measles, Mumps & Rubella (MMR)
Requirement: Two doses are required for kindergarten through 12th grade students.
A list of required immunizations for school attendance is also available in school offices.
Washington State Department of Health has more information about required vaccinations.