Vaccine Information for Parents and Guardians of Children in Child Care or School Grades TK/K-12

Vaccines help protect your child, their friends, classmates, and others in your community from various diseases. As opportunities for learning and play continue to grow, it is important keep children and students safe from illnesses they may come in contact with. In addition to keeping your child healthy, vaccines are required to attend public or private child care, elementary, or secondary school in California.

This includes children attending:

  • Child Care
  • Preschool
  • In-Home Family Day Care
  • Nursery School
  • Developmental Centers (pre-kindergarten facility)
  • Elementary and Secondary School (Grades TK/K-12)

Make sure your child is up to date with the vaccines needed to keep them healthy and attend school.
If your child does not have a healthcare provider, call 2-1-1 San Diego

 

California Immunization Requirements 

Children attending child care or school grades TK/K-12 in California are required to show proof of immunizations before starting school. This law applies to children attending both classroom-based (in-person) and remote learning environments. 

mother helping child get ready for school

Personal Belief Exemptions are no longer allowed for currently required vaccines.  If your child previously qualified for a personal belief exemption and needs to get caught up on vaccines, see the Vaccine Catch-Up for Schools Handout (For Children Age 7+).

Medical Exemptions are now processed through the California Immunization Registry-Medical Exemption (CAIR-ME) website.  If your child needs a medical exemption for a vaccine, follow the Instructions to Request a Medical Exemption. These instructions provide a step-by-step guide for submitting a medical exemption request. 

California Health and Safety Code Sections 120325-120375

If your child is behind on vaccinations or vaccinations were delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, contact your child's health care provider to schedule an appointment and get your child up to date on vaccines. 

Vaccine Information for Parents and Guardians

Below are one-page reference guides for parents to ensure your child has all the vaccines needed at each required checkpoint as well as links for more information about immunization laws and required vaccines.

Child Care

Parents_guide_for_childcare_entry

School Grades TK/K-12

Parents'_guide_for_school_entry

Find Your Child's Immunization Records

If your child received vaccinations at different locations, you may need to search in various places to find their complete record. Here are some tips to help you find your child's immunization records.
 

For more information call CAIR Help Desk at (800-578-7889) or email CAIRHelpdesk@cdph.ca.gov

  • Check with your child's current and previous health care providers. This could also include your local public health department or community clinic.
  • Look through your home. Sometimes immunization records are tucked away in a baby book, old papers, or included on school or camp medical history forms.
  • Check with any schools your child has attended to see if they have retained a record of immunizations required for school entrance. 
  • If your child received vaccines in another state, visit the CDC website for a list of state contacts.

For more information and tips, visit the California Department of Public Health's Where Can I Find Immunization Records? website.

Immunization Records are usually documented on yellow cardstock and are also known as "Yellow Cards".  Yellow Cards were recently reformatted to a standard 8.5x11 size and may look like either version pictured above.
Immunization Records are usually documented on yellow cardstock and are also known as "Yellow Cards". Yellow Cards were recently reformatted to a standard 8.5x11 size and may look like either version pictured above.

Keep Immunization Records Online

The California Immunization Registry (CAIR) is a centralized and confidential database for storing vaccine records. In San Diego County, vaccine records are entered in the CAIR. This system allows health care providers to easily document vaccines provided and see patient immunization records, including vaccines received at other locations or by other healthcare providers.

To consent to participate in this safe and secure system, visist the CAIR New Organization/Site Enrollment Webiste.

For more information call CAIR Help Desk at  (800-578-7889)  or email  CAIRHelpdesk@cdph.ca.gov

child care
boy and girl wearing cloth masks
teen standing in front of school

Resources for Parents and Guardians

Local San Diego County Resources

California Department of Public Health (CDPH) Immunization Branch

For more information or to request materials,
contact the San Diego Immunization Unit via  e-mail  or call us at  (866) 358-2966 .