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New vaccinations required for Maryland students when school year begins

New vaccinations will be required for Maryland students entering kindergarten and seventh grade when the new school year starts in August, health officials said this week.

Children starting kindergarten must have two chicken pox vaccinations, rather than one, and students headed into seventh grade need Tdap (tetanus-diphtheria-attenuated pertussis) and meningococcal vaccinations, officials said.

Both vaccinations for seventh-graders have been recommended in the past but now are required by the state, said Cindy Edwards, senior nurse administrator for communicable disease and epidemiology for the Montgomery County Department of Health and Human Services.

Montgomery parents are being asked to submit documentation to school nurses by Aug. 25, the first day of the 2014-2015 school year. Students who lack proof of immunizations will not be allowed to attend classes, officials said.

Free Tdap and meningococcal immunizations will be offered to incoming seventh-grade students from 1 to 4 pm on Friday, June 13 at:

*Col. E. Brooke Lee Middle School, 11800 Monticello Avenue, Silver Spring.

*Julius West Middle School, 651 Great Falls Road, Rockville.

*Rocky Hill Middle School, 22401 Brick Haven Way, Clarksburg.

Another vaccination clinic will be held on Saturday, Aug. 23, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the school system’s central offices, 850 Hungerford Dr., Rockville. The county’s immunization program also offers appointments and may be reached at 240-777-1050.

Donna St. George writes about education, with an emphasis on Montgomery County schools.



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