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Seattle public schools say students must be vaccinated or they cannot come back

Seattle public schools say students must be vaccinated or they cannot come back
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Seattle Public Schools told parents that students who are not properly vaccinated will not be allowed back to school on Jan. 8 following Christmas break if they are not in compliance with Washington state’s vaccination laws.

“Student records must reflect updated immunization status by January 8, 2020, or students cannot attend school until the required information is provided to the school nurse,” the district said in a notice on its website. “Families of students whose records are not up to date or are missing information will be notified via email, postal mail, and a letter home from your child’s school.”

The notice comes after the state legislature, responding to two measles outbreaks that led to 87 infections, passed a law eliminating personal and philosophical exemptions for the measles, mumps and rubella vaccination.

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State law called on school districts to begin excluding non-compliant students 30 days after the beginning of school in the fall, but individual school districts, in the absence of enforcement mechanisms, took the issue largely on a case-by-case basis.

The state manual reads, "Administrators in these facilities have final responsibility when it comes to immunization compliance,” according to local news outlet KIRO7.

The Tacoma School District excluded unvaccinated students as early as October, while the Issaquah district began to send out warning letters around the same time.

The district will hold a series of free vaccination clinics, according to KIRO7.