Student Health Requirements
In compliance with Massachusetts DPH regulations, any student entering school for the first time, whether at PK, K or through transfer from another school system, will be required to present a physician's certificate attesting to immunization against diphtheria, whooping cough, poliomyelitis, tetanus, measles, and such other communicable diseases as specified from time to time by the Department of Public Health.
The only exception (see Definition of Allowable Exemptions) to these requirements will be made on receipt of a written statement from a doctor that immunization would not be in the best interests of the child, or by the student's parent or guardian that vaccination or immunization is contrary to the religious beliefs of the student or parent. The law states that medical exemptions must be presented at the beginning of each school year. MDPH recommends also requesting religious exemptions on an annual basis, in writing, at the beginning of each school year. Please note that students who are not immunized (including those with medical and religious exemptions) may be subject to exclusion from school if there is exposure to certain communicable childhood diseases, as specified in 105 CMR 300.200.
All students in Stoughton Public Schools need a physical exam on file. Per MA Department of Public Health regulations, physical exams are required within one year prior to entrance to school or within 30 days after school entry and at intervals of either three or four years thereafter. A student transferred from another school system shall be examined as an entering student and health records transferred from the student’s previous school may be used to determine compliance with this requirement. In addition, a physical exam must be submitted prior to a student’s participation in competitive athletics, on an annual basis.
To comply with the above regulations, all students in the Stoughton Public School system entering grades PK, K, 4, 7, and 11 are requested to provide a copy of a physical examination to their school nurse. It is encouraged that the performance of the physical examination be done by the student's own physician, nurse practitioner or physician assistant whenever possible. Said health care provider shall record the results of the physical examination on health record forms approved by the Department of Public Health (click here for example) and provide a copy of this record containing the results of the examination and the physician’s, physician assistant or nurse practitioner's recommendations to the school.
Per MADPH school health guidelines, documentation of a TB risk assessment should be included on the health record form.
For students entering Kindergarten, the physical exam must show documentation of a passed vision screening (done within the previous 12 months). Evidence of a comprehensive eye examination is required for those students who have failed the screening and for students diagnosed with neurodevelopmental delay.
Per the Stoughton Public Schools Communicable Disease Policy, management of communicable diseases shall be in accordance with Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MADPH) guidelines. Per MDPH guidelines for Tuberculosis monitoring and prevention, a TB Risk Assessment should be performed by a health care provider in order to determine TB risk and if further testing is necessary. MDPH school guidelines advises that each school-aged child have a TB Risk Assessment completed and documented on the physical exam form. In addition, a school nurse may request a TB risk assessment by a medical provider and documentation of risk level and follow up testing (if applicable) under these listed circumstances:
• Birth, travel to or residency in a high-risk world region including Africa, Asia (except Japan), Pacific Islands, Middle East, Eastern Europe, Mexico, Central or South America, the Caribbean
• Exposure to an individual with diagnosed or suspected TB disease
• Household contact to individual with positive TB test (TST or IGRA)
• Parent and/or guardian or household member from a high-risk world region
• History of immunosuppressive disease or medications that might cause immunosuppression