Policy 5065: Immunizations and Health Examinations
In order to safeguard the school community from the spread of certain communicable diseases and in recognition that prevention is a means of combating the spread of disease, the Board requires all students to be immunized against certain diseases in accordance with State statutes, regulations of the Commissioner of Education and rules of the State Department of Health.
The Board believes that immunization is the primary responsibility of the parent/guardian or person in parental relation. However, the District will refer those students who cannot afford such immunizations to the Westchester County Health Department.
Each child prior to entering or attending the schools of the District is required to present from a licensed health practitioner a record of immunization against poliomyelitis, mumps, measles, diphtheria, rubella, varicella, pertussis, tetanus and hepatitis B, and where applicable, Haemophilus influenza type b (Hib), pneumococcal disease and meningococcal disease, and any other immunizations or booster immunizations as required pursuant to the provisions of Section 2164 of the Public Health Law. The District shall notify the Westchester County Health Department if a child is denied admission to or attendance in school due to lack of immunizations.
A student designated as homeless shall not be denied access to the District's schools due to lack of immunization or medical records. If a homeless student needs to obtain immunizations or immunization or medical records, the District shall immediately refer the parent/guardian or person in parental relation to the District's McKinney Vento (Homeless) Liaison, who must assist in obtaining necessary immunization or medical records or immunizations.
The immunization requirements may be waived by the Superintendent if a physician licensed to practice medicine in New York will certify that administering a specific vaccine to a particular child is detrimental to the child's health until such immunization is found no longer to be detrimental to the child's health. The physician’s certification must include the medical contraindication and the length of time the exemption is for. The Superintendent may consult with the School District Medical Director to determine the validity of a proposed medical exemption. Medical exemptions must be reissued annually to remain valid.
In the absence of a medical exemption, students who are not fully immunized may only be admitted to school if they are in the process of receiving immunization and have scheduled appointments to receive them at appropriate times or, are determined to have immunity pursuant to a blood test. This information will be subject to verification by the District.
The District may access the New York State Immunization Information System (NYSIIS) or the New York City Citywide Immunization Registry (CIR) to verify the immunization history of students entering or enrolled in the schools.
In accordance with Section 903 of the Education Law, each student must have a physical examination and present a health certificate to the Principal or designee describing the student's condition, signed by a duly licensed physician, physician assistant or nurse practitioner, who is authorized by law to practice in the state of New York, and consistent with any written practice agreement, or authorized to practice in the jurisdiction in which the examination was given if the Commissioner has determined that the standards of license and practice are comparable to those in New York. Such health certificate shall be presented prior to his/her initial entrance to school in the District and within 30 days of his/her entry into the prekindergarten or kindergarten, and first, third, fifth, seventh, ninth, and eleventh grades. The physical examination must not have been given more than 12 months prior to the commencement of the school year in which the examination is required and must describe the condition of the student when the examination was made, as well as whether such student is in a fit condition of health to permit his or her attendance in school. Each health certificate shall also state the student's body mass index (BMI) and weight status category.
If the required health certificate is not furnished at the required times, for 1st, 3rd, 5th, 7th, 9th, and 11th grades, the Principal or designee shall notify the student's parent/guardian or person in parental relation, in writing, that if the required health certificate is not furnished within 30 days of such notice, the examination will be made of the student as directed by the School District Medical Director, with parental consent. If the parent/guardian or person in parental relation will not give consent to the examination, other than based upon sincere and genuine religious beliefs, the Westchester County Department of Health will be notified and a report will be made to Child Protective Services. The physician, physician assistant or nurse practitioner performing the examination, as determined by the School District Medical Director, shall determine whether the student has defective sight or vision, or any other physical disability which may prevent the student from receiving full educational benefit and whether a one-time test for sickle cell anemia is necessary or desirable and, if so, the test shall be conducted and the certificate shall state the results of the test.
A dental health certificate shall be requested from each student at the same time that health certificates are required.
A health examination, dental examination or dental health history of any child may be requested at any time by the School District, in its discretion, to promote the educational interests of the child, if it is suspected that a medical issue is interfering with the child's education. Such requests for examination shall be reviewed by the School District Medical Director.
All students participating in interscholastic athletics must be examined and approved by the School District health practitioners, as directed by the School District Medical Director, or examined by a private physician, subject to review and approval for participation by the School District Medical Director.
The District shall provide the following screenings:
- Scoliosis screening at least once each school year for male students in grade 9 and for female students in grades 5 and 7, unless scoliosis screening is documented on the student’s health certificate;
- Vision screening, if not documented on the health certificate, to all students enrolled in school within six months of admission to school and distance acuity screening in grades prekindergarten or kindergarten, 1st, 3rd, 5th, 7th, and 10th, and when deemed necessary;
- Hearing screening, if not documented on the health certificate, to all students within six months of admission to school and in grades prekindergarten or kindergarten, 1st, 3rd and 5th and when deemed necessary;
- Any other screenings required by law.
The parent/guardian or person in parental relation shall be notified, in writing, of the results of the screenings. The results of these health screenings shall be recorded on forms and kept on file in school.
No student shall be required to submit to a health examination, health history or screening examination where the parent/guardian, person in parental relation or student submits a written and signed statement to the Principal that such examination, health history or screening conflicts with their genuine and sincere personal religious beliefs.
Adopted by Board of Education: March 26, 1979
- January 24, 1990
- December 2, 1997
- December 2, 2008
- March 3, 2009
- June 25, 2019