The Texas Department of State Health Services is responsible for setting minimum vaccine requirements in line with state law for schools operating in the State of Texas. Information on exclusions from immunization requirements, provisional enrollment, and acceptable documentation of immunizations may be found in §97.62, §97.66, and §97.68 of the Texas Administrative Code, respectively.
Vaccines currently required by the TDSHS to attend K-12 schools include:
- DTaP: Diphtheria, tetanus, and acellular pertussis (whooping cough); record may show DT or DTP
- Polio: IPV - inactivated polio vaccine; OPV – oral polio vaccine
- MMR: Measles, mumps, and rubella vaccines combined
- HepB: Hepatitis B vaccine
- Varicella: Chickenpox vaccine. May be written VAR on record
- MCV4: Meningococcal vaccine
- HepA: Hepatitis A vaccine
Full immunization and dosage requirements (i.e., schedule and number of doses) for the current school year are available from the TDSHS website in English and Spanish. Information on exclusions from immunization requirements, provisional enrollment, and acceptable documentation of immunizations may be found in §97.62, §97.66, and §97.68 of the Texas Administrative Code, respectively.
Texas Administrative Code §97.68 outlines acceptable evidence for vaccinations:
- Vaccines administered after September 1, 1991, shall include the month, day, and year each vaccine was administered.
- Documentation of vaccines administered that include the signature or stamp of the physician or physician's designee, or public health personnel, is acceptable. Immunization records generated from electronic health record systems must include clinic contact information and the provider's signature/stamp.
- An official immunization record generated from a state or local health authority is acceptable.
- An official record received from school officials, including a record from another state, is acceptable.
In compliance with state law, students must have acceptable evidence on file by September 15th of the academic year in order to attend classes regularly.
Texas Administrative Code §97.66(a) outlines school requirements for students who are not up-to-date with vaccine requirements:
The law requires that children and students be fully vaccinated against the specified diseases. A child or student may be enrolled provisionally if the child or student has an immunization record that indicates the child or student has received at least one dose of each specified age-appropriate vaccine required by this rule. To remain enrolled, the child or student must complete the required subsequent doses in each vaccine series on schedule and as rapidly as is medically feasible and provide acceptable evidence of vaccination to the child-care facility or school. A child-care provider, school nurse, or school administrator shall review the immunization status of a provisionally enrolled child or student every 30 days to ensure continued compliance in completing the required doses of vaccination. If, at the end of the 30-day period, a child or student has not received a subsequent dose of vaccine, the child or student is not in compliance and the facility shall exclude the child or student from attendance until the required dose is administered.
Families requesting exemptions to these requirements for any reason are required to obtain an affidavit from the TDSHS and submit it to the school in lieu of the child's vaccination records. An affidavit may be requested online, by mail, by fax, or in person.