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Virginia adds to its list of school-required vaccines

Published: Jul. 22, 2021 at 3:32 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - Virginia added new vaccine requirements for students entering kindergarten, seventh grade and twelfth grade this fall. Students need these shots in order to attend class.

Kindergarteners must have two doses of the Hepatitis A vaccine, while seventh graders must have their first dose of the meningococcal meningitis vaccine.

“These are pretty hard requirements, we don’t get a grace period on those,” Charlottesville City Schools Interim Director of Student Services and Human Relations Beth Baptist said.

Students going into twelfth grade also must have their updated meningococcal vaccine.

“If a student had their first shot, and many students have prior to age 16, they have to have a second one once they’re 16 and going into twelfth grade,” Baptist said.

If students have not had this vaccine, then they only need one dose.

“It is a requirement to have at least one prior to going into twelfth grade,” Baptist said.

Twelfth graders also need an HPV vaccine, but parents can opt them out of this one.

Students can prove they have these vaccines, as well as past year’s requirements, with their record or through the VIST system. School nurses have access to this system.

“We do encourage parents to go ahead and try to get all of these vaccines now that we’re five weeks away from the opening of school,” Baptist said. “If you wait till the last minute, while all the other schools are also trying to get them for the students, that will be harder.”

The Blue Ridge Health District is offering a vaccine clinic for rising Charlottesville seventh and twelfth graders by appointment only on August 11.

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