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Back-to-School Shots - You Have Exemptions

Abandoned-vehicles-old-abandoned-school-busBy Cathy Jameson

Ronan started school this week.  He was severely affected by vaccines.  He’s non-verbal, completely dependent on others and has autism.  Because of other medical issues that stemmed from the vaccine injury, Ronan’s on a modified school day only able to attend school for a few hours a day and only a few days a week.  Before this school year started, I dropped off some paperwork to the school:  Ronan’s health care plan, his seizure plan and his vaccine exemption form.  Until I’m assured that vaccines truly are safe and effective, that vaccine exemption form will accompany him each year until he graduates. 

Back-to-school letters from school administration typically include a cheerful welcome.  An announcement or two about what to expect on the first day back and a kind request to drop off school supplies including any remaining forms might be added in the letter too.  Ronan’s school recently sent out a back-to-school announcement.  Included was a memo about ‘back-to-school’ shots with a message that made it sound like he had to get them or he wouldn’t be allowed to attend school.  I appreciate the gentle reminder to wrap up our summer fun, but I do not care to be told incomplete and inaccurate information.  I especially don’t like it when that sort of information is demanded as the tone of the messages I received most certainly was a demand.

With the opportunity schools have with the large population they serve, instead of properly educating parents that vaccines are optional, I find that they’ve misinterpreted laws, altered wording and have been allowed to make absurd vaccine demands without any reprimand.  I find these vaccine demands both troubling and fascinating.  Troubling because some people would never think to question a school policy and fascinating because literature parents are given elsewhere about vaccines state otherwise:   


Why are dictator-like demands being handed down to parents?  To say get-vaccines-or-your-child-can’t-come-to-school is untrue.  And honestly, it’s dangerous.  Fortunately, for those who cannot or do not want to get vaccines, due to contraindications to medical conditions or because of religious belief for example, opting out of vaccines is possible.  (Opting out is actually a terrible term to use because, for the majority in the US, vaccines on the CDC’s schedule are merely recommended.  But, for lack of a better term, school admin, school nurses and medical providers will, or should be, familiar with what opting out means.)

In 48 states, up to three types of vaccine exemptions exist.  Check this map from National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC) http://www.nvic.org/ to see how to opt out of ‘school shots’. 


It’s a shame that parents feel the vaccine heat from schools.  Instead of focusing on administering first aid when it’s necessary, school nurses have been allowed to become school shot Nazis. 

It’s no wonder more people are not aware of vaccine exemptions.  The very people who can educate parents don’t.  What do parents do?  Blindly trust?  Yes.  Let their guard down?  More often than not, yes.  They do both because they haven’t figured out or learned that need to keep their guard up.  I was that parent when I let fear and a school nurse persuade a decision I now know I didn’t have to make.  That decision is one I regret to this day. 

I recently witnessed a student being told she must get the shot or she will not be allowed into school.  Worse, the medical personnel told her the shot would be good for her.  I wonder if the nurse based her opinion with information from a vaccine study from the CDC.  With the recent allegations coming from a CDC scientist http://www.theblaze.com/stories/2014/08/28/researcher-says-cdc-chose-to-cover-up-data-linking-autism-with-vaccines-but-theres-more-to-the-story/ who authored a study that includes apparent fraud, the school nurse is not only telling half-truths, she might very well be citing falsified information.  I can only hope and pray that the student’s parents know to look up what is actually required and to then exercise their rights to say no, thank you when the school comes around looking for documentation. 

If parents chose to vaccinate that’s a decision they should make on their own.  It should never be a made because someone bullied, persuaded or worse, demanded it of them.  Never.

I know better how to advocate for my children because of past vaccine decisions I made.  I educated myself enough to know that even though a nurse said my children had to get shots to get into school, I discovered that no, my children could not be barred from school entry if they did not get the vaccines she said they needed.  Unfortunately, I learned that fact after I’d already begun to vaccinate my children though.  I wish I’d started learning sooner because what I also learned is that vaccines come with no warranty, no guarantee and should vaccine cause a reaction, no one would be sticking around after the fact to help me or my child.  That was a tough lesson to learn.

Not all back-to-school letters and supply lists need to include vaccines.  If your state offers exemption, I wish that that information would be a part of any and every vaccine communication that comes from the schools.  I asked Ronan’s new school nurse to please consider adding exemption information to future vaccine messages.  It really don’t think it would be too hard to do.  It’s as simple as including a link or directing parents to search their state’s particular vaccine exemption information.  One line is all it takes: “…vaccine exemptions can be submitted…download this form or follow these directions…”  Easy, right?  Sadly, I find didn’t find that information included in the latest back-to-school paperwork I got from the school.  Maybe they will include it next year.

Cathy Jameson is a Contributing Editor for Age of Autism.


cia parker

Thanks for your comment, it hadn't been put up yet at the time I wrote my last comment.


guinea pig, your name reminds me of the poor children who are experimented on and now we see from the whistleblower that they indeed are fixing the studies. Vaccines need to be safety studied physiologically not just epidemiologically. Too bad if you don't like that.

cia parker

My child reacted to vaccines with encephalitis, GI disease, and autism. I don't have to imagine it. She cannot use or understand much language, and is lonely, frustrated, and excluded from participating in the world because of this. It would have been better if she had been rendered blind or deaf by a VPD (which would be an extremely rare consequence, but conceivable). I would MUCH rather have taken our chances with the VPDs.
The GI disease is an adverse effect of the same vaccines that cause autism. Fortunately, in her case, several years of adhering to a gluten-free, casein-free, then grain-free as well, diet was successful in clearing out the yeast and bacteria in her gut that were causing the problem, and I think probably she's normal now, and I'm letting her eat grain products and milk products again. She seems to be symptom-free at this time, after many years of suffering. You know nothing about the issues if you just assert there is no connection with GI problems. Something like 75% of autistic children also have severe GI conditions. It is also true that one in ten people have these problems, which is why the Paleo diet has become so popular: but it's also from vaccine reactions, although it may be the only symptom of reaction in many of these people.
Workarounds for communication difficulties? Well, please come and share your strategies with the people at my daughter's school, both teaching staff and students. The autism and speech teachers have been working from the premise that the speech is there, she just needs encouragement to use it, in spite of the fact that she has NEVER once anywhere used ANY perfect tense, or any sentence longer than six or seven words with just one clause, never a single descriptive adjective. Never even something like I saw a beautiful dog today. Never. Not even I saw a dog today. Not even I see a dog, flower, book, candy bar, or anything else. I just went to a meeting this morning at her school, and looked at the table of contents of the ESL book Ventures 3 that I think they should use to help her learn English, and told them she had NEVER used any of the structures taught in it: how long has? since, too, also, neither, most of, part of, more, less, on and on. I'm telling them the truth, that the inborn language structures we are born with were seriously damageed by the vaccine autism, and the only answer is to patiently teach them step by step, with practice and encouragement. The other day we studied "used to..." in the Connect book at home. She concentrated and tried, but still wrote He knew used to a lot of people. Did NOT realize that it HAD to be He used to know a lot of people. They and I have wasted fourteen years of her life, and she may never catch up, like the wolf children never caught up. Because of vaccines. The new autism resource consultant was familiar with Noam Chomsky's theories, and I can see he believes me. I said how overwhelming I had found it when I first lived in Mexico, trying to construct complex sentences in Spanish when it was very unfamiliar, very hard for me. I said how FAST everyone spoke, so fast I couldn't make out ANYTHING of what they said. And he said, the first school professional ever, "It must be like that for Cecily." Exactly. Eight years now of no one using any kind of workaround to help her communicate, just assuming that she could if she wanted to. But she can't. Workaround like what? If she wants to say "I think cats are the best pet, quieter than dogs, not as rambunctious, and you don't have to take them for walks," how do you think she can do that if the inborn grammatical structures in her brain have been shorted out by vaccine damage, and do not even let her formulate a coherent thought using them? You think it's enough if she can just fumble out "I...like...cats"? How far do you think that's going to get her? Job? Friendship? Marriage? No. Her brain was damaged by the vaccine encephalitic screaming syndrome from the hep-B vaccine at birth, given without permission. Look at the package inserts. Nearly every vaccine lists encephalitis as a possible adverse reaction, characterized most often by prolonged, inconsolable screaming for three hours or more, from the pain caused by the brain that has swollen in reaction to the incursion of a vaccine, and the hep-B vaccine is one of the main offenders. My baby screamed for four days and nights, starting in the classic time frame for that reaction to that vaccine. So you see, that is why I, that is why we, are angry. Not born with it.


Cia, Thank you so much for your comments here on AoA and other news sources; especially in the last few weeks. I hope you know that most of us probably hope that you don't waste your time debating a recent comment of shite.


ciaparker: Most people could come up with someone to stay with their child if they couldn't stay home with him, just as they do now when he has to stay home sick from school.

For weeks? Maybe a month?

ciaparker: And you nonchalantly say it's no big deal to cause a child to lose his language or never develop any, no big deal that he'll never be able to converse, have friends, have a job, be independent, get married and have children, travel, etc. etc., just so the parents don't have to find someone to stay with him when he's sick? Watch him go out like a light after a vaccine, losing his words, his brightness and sociability, scream with pain from GI disease, but hey! He's alive. Who cares about the death of the person he had been, and the one he was becoming.

If this happened, I'd be up in arms. But it doesn't. GI problems don't exist, a guy just made that up for money. As for conversing and the other things, well, that's mainly up to the parents. There are workarounds for communication difficulties. Parents could build their kids up instead of giving up at the minute of diagnosis or subjecting the kid to 'cure' after 'cure.' And marriage isn't the be-all and end-all it once was.
It's very telling that you frame autism as a 'death.' It's not, you and your friends are just too rigid to see a disabled kid as a worthwhile human. Tell me, what would you do if a child of yours went deaf or blind from the measles and mumps you love so much? Would you get them the help they need or kick them to the curb?
Oh, yes, and what color is the sky in your world today?


It's so ironic that this article was posted yesterday when I received the massive pile of paperwork from my son's school. Guess what was in there? A two-sided vaccine info sheet about the HPV vaccine. No other vax sheet was given to us, just that one about HPV. It pissed.me.off.

1) Do people really believe that this is a service announcement from the school because they truly care about your student? The school can't even spend money on envelopes to mail out summer paperwork anymore? Do you think they'd pay to photocopy this info sheet?

2) It's not even a mandatory vax! I could almost understand a vax info sheet if it was for something required like DTaP booster or even, gasp, the flu.

3) And there's no mention of the side effect called death. Is death not enough of a side effect to mention here?

I'm glad there are others out there with whom I can share this story. Thanks for listening.

cia parker

In 1962, according to researcher Dr. Langmuir, measles killed four in 10,000 babies with it, two in 10,000 one and two year olds, less than one in 10,000 who were over three. Going through measles gave permanent immunity, a stronger, healthier immune system, developmental strides, and protected against several cancers and degenerative diseases in later life. I think it is worth a lot to get those advantages for your child. Vitamin A reduces disability from measles. Most people could come up with someone to stay with their child if they couldn't stay home with him, just as they do now when he has to stay home sick from school. Those who can't, and would rather take the chance of causing lifelong disability in their child so they don't have to go to any trouble for him, could certainly go ahead and give him the measles vaccine or MMR. Girls who get rubella in childhood, as I did, don't ever have to worry about it again. You can get shingles as a sequelae to either natural chickenpox or the varicella vaccine. Autism is not in itself terminal, though the initial vaccine encephalitis can be, and we call it SIDS.
And you nonchalantly say it's no big deal to cause a child to lose his language or never develop any, no big deal that he'll never be able to converse, have friends, have a job, be independent, get married and have children, travel, etc. etc., just so the parents don't have to find someone to stay with him when he's sick? Watch him go out like a light after a vaccine, losing his words, his brightness and sociability, scream with pain from GI disease, but hey! He's alive. Who cares about the death of the person he had been, and the one he was becoming? You're right, those of us who treasure our precious snowflake children find that callousness toward their development into the fullness of life bone-chilling. And you know what? I don't like you either.



Yes, I completely agree with you on all levels. Rather unfortunately, no one is forcing our school districts to follow the rule of law and they're getting away with illegal activities re: this issue all across the board.

When I was with the NVIC, I HAD to deal with the school nurses because that's what I was supposed to do. They were a major source of this problem. But I also contacted every. single. school. board. in. this. state. I don't think anyone can truly appreciate how large this state is until you've faxed and/or emailed every single school district in California. I emailed every single school board, individual nurses within our districts and every single Superintendent of whom had an email address (believe it or not, quite a few of our school districts have no email addresses either publicly provided or they aren't hooked up to the Net). Tedious work, believe me.

I also spoke personally with school board members, Superintendents, parents, nurses and concerned teachers.

Speaking with all of these type individuals taught me a LOT. And I must say, EVEN the nurses who started out so belligerently with me in the beginning, ended up softening up with me and opening up to me about their own fears regarding vaccinating. IT WAS A REAL LEARNING EXPERIENCE FOR ALL PARTIES.

Having said the above, I have also spoken before our own school board on several occasions regarding not only vaccine safety concerns, but special ed issues as well. I worked with various middle and high school Principals regarding the newsletters going out to parents regarding the fairly new Tdap mandate for 7th graders out here, and have spoken with physicians/nurses within our local and state public health departments, including two pediatricians. So yes, I've been out there in the trenches, just as you are all, now.

I really do have other priorities on my plate and truthfully, more than I can handle at this time. But because my passion for this subject has never waned, nor will it, I still contribute as much as I can re: the informing of parents, etc., to the safety issues with vaccines, anyway and everywhere I can.



Kim: easles is NOT a deadly killer in America - remember the BRADY BUNCH sit com where all 6 kids had the measles? A cheesey comedy?

Yes..and it was a comedy, not real life. Never mind the risk of death, how about the risk of being homeless from skipping weeks of work to stay home with a sick kid? Of having the kid go blind or deaf? Of finding out they will never have kids themselves? Heck, what about spending a week with your jaw locked due to shingles deciding to paralyze a nerve. Not a lot of laughs to be found in those situations.
No kid ever died from autism. Of drowning due to wandering, of being murdered by parents who just can't cope, of dubious cures, or of decades of neglect in an asylum, yes. Despite what you think, or secretly hope, autism itself isn't terminal.

I don't comment here often, since opposing points of view aren't welcome and I dislike each and every one of you.Especially when you're pretending to mourn for people you don't really care about.

Ciaparker: Basically, what I told Kim. I think that parents should have the choice to vaccinate or not. I also think the school system should be able to educate students and should keep the interest of the majority in mind. If that happens to mean that your snowflake can't go to public school, tough.

david m burd

Politicalguineapig: Any chance you provide some substance? In place of stupid comments?

Laura Hayes

To Bayareamom,

Yes, I know that technically speaking, CA law does not require schools to inform parents about exemptions. On the other hand, saying "No shots, no school" is a bald-faced lie, so to me, that is something for which they could be liable. Sure wish some parent would sue them re. that.

Knowing this, that is why I did not include school nurses on my list to be approached. I have found them to be the most resistant and difficult to educate. Like I said, go to the school board, superintendent, and school principal, and show them how what they are saying/doing is wrong. Ask them if they want to be known for not being transparent with parents, for lying, and for denying parents their rights. Appeal to their integrity and ethics, and hope they have some!

No school board wants parents standing up and pointing out on the record, and for all to hear, that is has been lying to parents, not informing them of their rights under the law, refusing to respond to reasonable requests for them to act ethically and morally, etc.

AoA parents are amazing, and I have complete confidence they can make a powerful and successful argument to their school districts about the absolute need and moral obligation to inform parents, at every turn, of their vaccine exemption rights. Take action today!


"Not being informed of rights is the same thing as not having rights (think Miranda Law)."

@Laura Hayes:

The problem that I saw with this issue when I was the NVIC State Director/California, Laura, is that the law/statute in place re: exemptions does not require school district personnel to outright inform the parents of their right to the use of an exemption.

Unbelievably, when I posed this issue with many a school nurse in our CA school districts, many of them were abrasive with me and told me flat out they were NOT REQUIRED to inform parents re: their right to the use of exemptions and ONLY IF a parent was knowledgeable enough to ASK for an exemption form (in some of these districts), would they then be informed as to their rights.

There were a plethora of issues with this, of course. Some district nurses, as I found out, were outright lying to parents about the requirements/procedures in the use of these exemptions, i.e., as in telling parents they had to sign off on this exemption form in front of an authority figure within the district. This simply was not true, but that's what many parents were being told.

What I found during my investigation with this issue is that most of our school districts receive information about these exemptions from LOCAL public health boards. It was usually some local public health board bureaucrat who would provide, often at times, deliberate disinformation to unknowing district personnel as to the proper procedures in the use of these exemptions.

Also, implicit with this issue is the conditioned, knee jerk response that most school officials have when it comes to immunization. THEY DO NOT WANT TO INFORM PARENTS OF THEIR RIGHT TO THE USE OF AN EXEMPTION because they truly believe it is in the child's best interest to be vaccinated. Thus, the deliberate/emotional reasons many of these school officials do not proffer appropriate information to parents about the exemptions.

I had many a conversation with nurses who would participate in this disinformation campaign of sorts with parents about the exemption issues and more often than not, they ended up confessing that they'd deliberately provide false information because of their dogged determination to see these kids receive their vaccinations.

There are multiple reasons why parents are not told the truth about exemptions, but for the most part, it is going to require education by knowledgeable parents to their local school boards, etc., in order to insure parents' rights are upheld with this exemption issue.

IF the language contained within the statute REQUIRED A SCHOOL OFFICIAL TO INFORM OUTRIGHT TO PARENTS THEIR RIGHT TO THE USE OF AN EXEMPTION, this would, of course, change everything. But remember the actual language contained within these statutes are written by various legal and political bureaucrats who are gatekeepers for the Big Pharma controllers. The language which is NOT contained within the statute allowing parents their right to the use of an exemption, DELIBERATELY leaves out the mandate requiring school officials to notify parents of this right.

Laura Hayes

Not being informed of rights is the same thing as not having rights (think Miranda Law).

Parents, I urge you to educate your school board, your superintendent, and your school principal about your particular state's vaccine exemptions. Explain to them that not disclosing this information could not only make them liable, it shows a complete and utter lack of integrity. Ask if they would like district parents to find out that they are not only not being transparent with them, they are in fact LYING to them if they are stating any type of "no shots, no school" message (in any form, be it on paper, on the school's website, on the school's billboard, on their robo-phone messages, etc.).

Once you've educated them, hold them accountable. Speak at a school board meeting if necessary. It takes time, and often repeated follow-ups, but I know for a fact it can be done. Someone just has to be willing to take the needed steps.

cia parker

Political Guinea Pig,
Yes, measles is good for kids past infancy: also pertussis, mumps, rubella, and chickenpox. They give permanent immunity if no vaccines have been given, and train the immune system to learn how to function effectively. Unlike vaccines, which often (always?) cause encephalitic brain damage or autoimmune disease. I've had measles, rubella, pertussis, flu, rotavirus, chickenpox, and hep-A. Normal cases, not that bad, permanent immunity to some, complete recovery. I have MS and my daughter has autism from vaccine reactions. That is what we're talking about here. Do you want to force unwilling parents to permanently and severely damage their children with vaccines?

I had told the new autism teacher at my daughter's middle school (really a misnomer, there are no separate academic classes geared toward those with an autistic language disorder) that she had reacted to the hep-B and DTaP with autism. And yet, at back-to-school night, he asked if I had turned in her form saying she had received the Tdap vaccine required for incoming eighth-graders. Why would he ask that? Do I look stupid? I said I had gone to the health department downtown in April to get our religious exemption form and had turned it in at the school office. Was he trying to trap me, or did he not know, even as an autism teacher, that the exemption was easily available?

Managing Editor for PolGuinPig

PoliticalGuineaPig - what a comment - measles is NOT a deadly killer in America - remember the BRADY BUNCH sit com where all 6 kids had the measles? A cheesey comedy? Take your DEATH FROM ALL DISEASE chicken little thoughts elsewhere. No one wants death - ever - I'll have to go see how many comments you have on every post we have run with a child who has died because of his or her autism - I'm sure you're there with copious concern, yes? Every life is precious?



Why put your snowflakes in public school to begin with? Just so you can hassle the teachers and the parents of their classmates? Or get the classmates sick? After all, measles are good for kids-well, the ones who survive, anyway.


Apparently Pemberton's movie, "Vaccines--Calling the Shots," will be broadcast as a Nova program. I can only imagine what it will be like. This panel was astonishing. It was like listening to Strom Thurmond talking about "nigras." Could anybody be more clueless?

I'm busy in the mornings so I wasn't able to watch continuously, but I doubt if anybody mentioned Thompson or the CDC. It was just the same old bromides. "Vaccines good, anti-vaxxers stupid." That sort of thing.

At the end, somebody on the panel murmured, "That was good" and they all agreed.


Sonya Pemberton is on CSPAN2 talking about her movie "Vaccines--Calling the Shots." She was only able to locate and talk to one family with a child who was possibly injured by vaccines and, guess what, that child turned out to already have epilepsy which was merely triggered by vaccines. Silly parents.

Offit and some other schmucks on talking about vaccines: emotional parents fear scary shots because of the internet. Speak slowly and clearly and keep it really simple and maybe you can get women to understand that there's nothing to worry about. But parents really can't understand so it's up to scientists to convince them.

Nice rug, Offit


I don't know if this is still the case, but some schools used to receive extra funding if they could show they had a certain percentage of their students fully vaccinated. Perhaps that is why the schools push so hard? Anyone out there who works for the schools know if this is still true? You would think the schools would be interested in the safest approach, as they are going broke trying to fund all the special ed students. Makes no sense to put more in harms way, but that's what they do year after year. I have to think the school nurses believe in the vaccines they push, though, as most seem genuinely concerned about the children. They just don't realize they've been misinformed all these years. So sad for everyone! At least more young parents are learning from others about the dangers of the "too many, too soon" vaccine policies currently in place, and making their own intelligent decisions.

John Stone

Hi Cathy

This information about the nasal flu vaccine (Flumist or Fluenz) being used in all schools in the UK this autumn but also I believe widely in the US may be of help:



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