Students worried by lack of vaccination requirements

More stories from Emily Speranza


Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Montgomery County will continue to provide free vaccination services until all of the remaining students receive their requirements.

All Maryland students are required every year to receive specific vaccinations such as Tdap (prevents pertussis) and MCV4 (prevents brain infection and meningitis), in order to attend any school in the state.

At the start of the school year about 4,000 students in Montgomery County failed to meet that requirement, but that number has decreased over the last week to 22 students who are currently prohibited from attending school until the vaccination requirements have been meet. 

“It’s really concerning that kids would come to school without getting the proper medical care, that could just result with making a whole bunch of students sick and it’s really not fair for those who did get their requirements. I get that some people may not be able to get them for whatever reason but there are resources,” junior Rakeb Halleriam said.

MCPS has been trying to provide many more free mandatory vaccinations for the last-minute conflict in several locations from Germantown to Silver Spring.

Some of the locations even reside within MCPS schools such as Julius West Middle School.

I think it’s great that we have free vaccine places around the county. I know people that have actually used on of these stations in Germantown because they didn’t receive their vaccine requirements for the start of the school year,” junior Lexi Manning said. 

The reasons for the lack of meeting the vaccination requirements are unknown among the 22 students who remain, but some students claim that government-funded vaccines or religious exceptions may be valid reasons for students not meeting the requirements.

“I think it’s ok if the government wants to mandate these vaccines because it’s important for people’s health. But if religious reasons come in for students, that should be an exception,” sophomore Nehi Pathak said. 

This idea of religious exemption for vaccines continues to remain controversial for students because many believe that their health should be prioritized. 

MCPS will continue to provide free vaccination locations for students until further notice.