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District 186 Holds Immunization Clinics
SPRINGFIELD -- Taking a proactive approach to protect your child; that's what District 186 is doing this week.
This year the district is making changes to its immunization policy, which now requires proof of vaccinations much earlier in the school year.
All summer long the board has been putting out warnings to parents saying don't wait until it's too late.
Classrooms at Washington Middle School have been turned into mini medical clinics.
Doctors and nurses are inside right now making sure kids are ready for the next school year.
The goal, get kids their required physicals and immunizations so the aren't barred from school after the deadline.
Last year in district 186 five hundred students couldn't return to school because they were not up to date on their immunizations and physicals.
To prevent that from happening again the district set up clinics at two middle schools, so during registration parents can make sure their kids can see a doctor and get their shots.
"It's a law in Illinois that children that are in kindergarten, 6th and 9th grades and anybody new to Springfield schools has a physical and that we get an updated immunization record. As far as i immunizations go, it's really important they get their immunizations to stop the spread of infections," said Valerie Rogers, Health Services Coordinator, Springfield Public Schools.
Mara Sims has six kids and two of them needed shots before starting school this year.
She thinks the clinic should become a yearly tradition.
"It was really easy too, I thought it was going to be a long line, but the lines are moving really fast," said Mara Sims, parent.
All new students will need to prove their up to date on immunizations and provide the school with proof of a physical.
So students new to the district can stop by the clinic and see a doctor too.
"We have a lot of people that move into Springfield from other areas and we have a large turnover of students as well as those who just didn't get them," said Rogers.
After registering for classes and getting their immunizations students come here, to empty class rooms that doctor's have turned into exam rooms for their yearly physicals.
"I think it's good for the students and convenient for the parents. Even though we had to commute it wasn't quite far, but I think it's convenient for the parents that live close by," said Edmund Tillman, parent.
District 186 has moved up the deadline for physicals and immunizations.
Proof of both have to be given to the school by the 10th day of the school year, September 2nd.
After that students are not allowed to return to school until it's been completed.
If you missed today's clinic, don't worry.
District 186 will hold another clinic tomorrow during registration at both Jefferson and Washington Middle Schools from 9am until 2pm.