California law: No vaccinations, no public school

- It may not be fun, but it is the law.

To go to public school in California you have to be immunized. Among the required vaccines are diphtheria, Haemophilus influenzae type b (bacterial meningitis), measles, mumps, pertussis (whooping cough), polio, rubella, tetanus, hepatitis B and chicken pox.

According to Dr. Chris Tolcher, these shots are important.

"Vaccines are one of the most researched and monitored things I do in pediatrics, and they’re recommended by all authorities in pediatric health," Tolcher said.

While the state now mandates vaccination requirements, some parents want them staggered. They don't want to follow the recommended schedule. They fear side effects.

"The problem with that is that it takes longer for them to be fully vaccinated which delays immunity," said Tolcher. "They may not meet the requirements for school entry at the time. And, most importantly, the kids are still vulnerable to diseases."

Ever since the beginning of the month when LAUSD’s school nurses opened up 14 different clinics to give kids immunizations, they say parents and their children have been parading into these clinics trying to beat the deadline.

The clinics are free for those with no private insurance. A case in point is Douglas Oswaldo Sandoval Flores, who is 16-years-old and newly here from El Salvador.

He’ll be in ninth grade, but because he had none of the immunizations, he had to have them all.

"The law is no immunizations, no school," said LAUSD Nursing Coordinator Roberta Villanueva.

At the Reseda clinic where we met Villanueva, they ran out of the polio vaccine -- so Flores and Melanie Pineda will have to come back within a month for that.

According to Villanueva, when school opens students will walk into the front door of the school, and if they have no immunizations or are missing immunizations, "they will be stopped at the door and be asked to go fulfill the rest of the requirement."

The only exemptions allowed must have a doctor’s explanation.

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