Immunization of School Pupils Act Suspensions Set to be Enforced on March 26 for Elementary Students

Published on: February 26, 2024

As of February 26, 2024, 994 elementary school students born in 2014, 2015, and 2016 who received suspension orders from the Brant County Health Unit (BCHU), in accordance with the Immunization of School Pupils Act (ISPA), remain non-compliant. 

These students will face suspension starting March 26, 2024, for a period of up to 20 school days if their immunization records are not updated with the health unit. Suspension orders were initially issued to students by mail in early January.

BCHU is required to collect and maintain the immunization records of all students under the age of 18 attending school in Brantford-Brant. This is to ensure that all students have up-to-date immunization records in the event of an outbreak of a vaccine-preventable disease.

In Ontario, the ISPA means all students between the age of 4-17 must provide proof of routine childhood immunization for Tetanus, Diphtheria, Pertussis, Polio, Measles, Mumps, Rubella, Meningitis, and Varicella (for children born in 2010 and after) or have a valid exemption to attend school. Proof of COVID-19 vaccines is currently not a requirement to attend school and does not need to be reported.

On February 7, 2024, 272 high school students, born in 2006, and 2007, were suspended for non-compliance with the ISPA requirements. As of February 26, 2024, 12 high school students in Brantford-Brant remain suspended.

Parents and caregivers can review and update their child’s immunization record with the Health Unit at bchu.org/emunization or contact their primary healthcare provider to receive any immunizations needed. Students can also receive any missing vaccines at the health unit by calling 519-753-4937 ext. 451 to make an appointment.

Quote

“Keeping students healthy and safe in the classroom is an important shared responsibility between parents/caregivers and those of us working in public health. Ensuring your child’s record is up-to-date, in advance of the March 26 suspension date, is crucial to ensuring that we avoid preventable outbreaks in our schools and that children in our community avoid disruptions to vital school-based learning.”

Dr. Rebecca Comley, Medical Officer of Health, Brant County Health Unit  

The Brant County Health Unit (BCHU) is one of 34 health units in Ontario that serves a population of more than 136,000 people in the County of Brant and the City of Brantford. The Health Protection and Promotion Act and the Ontario Public Health Standards govern our work. BCHU strives to deliver high-quality programs and services to address the unique health needs of our community and improve the health and well-being of our population. We are committed to building a healthier future for everyone.