Children who attend school in Ontario (see Registering a Child) must be immunized against certain diseases, unless they have a valid written exemption. Parents can decide not to immunize their child for medical, religious or philosophical reasons. Without a valid exemption, children may not be allowed to attend school unless they have been vaccinated.
The mandatory vaccinations are:
- Tetanus (lockjaw)
- Rubella (German measles)
- Measles (red measles)
Some vaccinations, such as for chicken pox, pneumonia, meningitis, hepatitis B, Haemophilus influenza type b (Hib) disease and pertussis (whooping cough), are recommended but not required for school attendance. Both required and recommended vaccines are available for children free of charge.
Children are also eligible for the annual flu shots that are provided at no charge to all Ontario residents to protect them against seasonal influenza.
Parents are required to provide information about their child's immunization record to the local public health department and to keep the information up to date.
For More Information
Canadian Immunization Guide Seventh Edition – 2006
Information from the Public Health Agency of Canada about types of vaccines approved for use in Canada and their contents, the benefits of vaccines, safety of immunization, recommended immunizations and their timing.
What immunizations does my child need to go to school?
A guide to understanding mandatory childhood vaccinations, keeping immunization records, the risks of immunization, and the consequences of refusing certain vaccinations. Available in Arabic, Chinese (Simplified), French, Gujarati, Pilipino (Tagalog), Punjabi, Russian, Spanish, Tamil, and Urdu.
Immunization — Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-term Care
Ontario government site with information on immunization and the various vaccination programs available for infants, children, and adults and a list of publically funded vaccines provided by the province. The information includes videos and a section on Myths and Facts
about vaccines and immunization, which is also available as a downloadable PDF in multiple languages: English, French, Arabic, Chinese, Farsi, German, Italian, Korean, Oji-Cree, Polish, Portuguese, Punjabi, Russian, Somali, Spanish, Tagalog, Tamil, and Urdu.
Online Immunization Reporting — KFL&A Public Health
Online Immunization Reporting site for Kingston, Lennox & Addington (KFL&A) area children. This site tracks children ages 0 to 17 years who attend a licensed day care or school in the KFL&A area. It is used to protect children during an outbreak of a vaccine preventable disease.