Vaccinations for Students
December 2 update for families | Due to the sustained high numbers of non-compliant students in grades 6-12, DC Public Schools (DCPS) will offer students and families an additional week to make vaccination appointments and receive their required pediatric vaccinations.
Families with students who are missing their required vaccinations should make an appointment next week at one of the high-capacity vaccination sites operated by DC Health and Children’s National. These high-capacity vaccination clinics are available to any student and are open 8:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, at four sites across the District. Call 1-888-884-BEAR (2327) to make an appointment.
Exclusions for non-compliant students will begin Friday, December 16. This means that your child will not be able to attend school proof of immunization compliance is received.
We encourage you to visit your child’s doctor if you did not schedule a wellness visit before the first day of school. Your doctor can make sure your child has the right forms to show they have their required shots to attend school. Pediatric vaccine clinics are open, too.
If your school does not have a record of the immunizations your student received, your school nurse or another member of the School Health Team will reach out to you this month. They can help make sure your child has the important immunizations and other preventive care.
Make sure your child is up-to-date on their required shots
DC Public Schools works closely with DC Health to ensure the health and safety of our students, staff, and community. District law and regulations require all schools to ensure students are fully immunized to attend school, and we know that childhood immunizations are critical to keeping our community safe.
Now is the time for families to schedule an annual wellness visit with your child’s doctor or attend a neighborhood or school-based vaccine clinic.
If you need a COVID-19 vaccine or booster, visit your local COVID Center.
To attend school, families are required to submit their student’s up-to-date immunization record by the first day of school. Vaccinations are critical for preventing disease and reducing the dangers that can come with being exposed to certain diseases. You can find a list of required immunizations for your child according to their age by viewing this helpful flyer from DC Health.
If you have not already submitted your child’s immunization records to your school:
- Make an appointment with your child’s doctor. DC offers resources to help you find a health provider if you do not have health insurance.
- Have the doctor complete DC’s Universal Health Certificate, available here. Your health provider may also provide a different proof of immunization document or an exemption explanation.
- Submit your immunization paperwork to your child’s school. You can drop it off at your school or call the school’s main office if you have questions about how to submit your form.
Where to Obtain a Vaccine
The best place for DC families to access childhood immunizations is at their primary medical provider. If a family does not have a health care provider for their child or has difficulty securing an appointment before the first day of school, they can select one from a list of pediatric locations, located in every ward.
FIND A FREE VACCINATION OPPORTUNITY NEAR YOU!
- Mobile Vaccination Units – DC Health has placed free mobile medical units at schools and additional sites at recreation centers, COVID Centers, and other community locations in all eight wards. Dates and locations can be found here. Families can pre-register for the free mobile vaccination units by using the registration link. (also available in Spanish – Español)
- Vaccination Block Parties – Children’s National is hosting free school-based immunization clinics every Saturday in the months of August and September. In addition to free vaccines, there will be food trucks, raffles, giveaways and more! Staff will be available to answer questions about immunizations. Families should pre-register for an immunization appointment using the registration link.
- COVID Centers – The COVID-19 vaccine is available for free to any individual age 6 months and older at the District’s COVID Centers located in all eight wards. More information on accessing the COVID-19 vaccine is available on the District’s coronavirus website.
Additional Resources for Families
DC Health promotes health, wellness and equity, across the District, and protects the safety of residents, visitors and those doing business in our Nation’s Capital. One of many ways this mission is achieved is by protecting against vaccine preventable diseases.
Infants and Children 6 months – 4 years can get vaccinated. The vaccine is safe, effective and lowers the chance of infants and children getting and spreading COVID-19. Infants and children will receive a smaller dose of either the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine than what adults receive.
Follow this link to download the Universal Health Certificate and Oral Health Assessment Form, as well as access medical or religious exemption forms.
Page updated: January 9, 2023