Research has shown that there is a direct link between a child’s academic achievement and his or her physical health. Simply put, children who are healthier have better attendance and perform better in school. That’s why CPS is encouraging all parents to complete their children’s health exams and immunizations prior to their first day of school – Monday, August 26.
Required Exams and Immunizations
Numerous health requirements apply to all children enrolled in a Chicago Public School. The newest of these is the Tdap vaccine for pertussis (also known as whooping cough), which is required for students in grades 6-12 beginning this fall. Whooping cough begins similarly to a cold, then leads to a long-lasting cough that is spread through coughing and sneezing. Due to the highly contagious nature of this illness, parents are strongly encouraged to have their children immunized prior to the start of school.
All immunizations, physical exams and vision exams must be completed and the forms submitted to schools before October 15, 2013. For a complete list of what is required, including a breakdown of exams, screenings and immunizations by grade, click here.
Vision and Dental Exams
For students entering kindergarten, or for any child who is new to the Illinois school system, a vision exam must be completed no later than October 15. Families without an established eye doctor can visit the Illinois Eye Institute (IEI) at Princeton Elementary School – 5125 S. Princeton Avenue – which provides eye care for CPS students. The clinic is open from 8:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Monday through Friday throughout the year. Appointments are encouraged, but walk-ins are welcome between 8:30 – 9:30 a.m. The IEI accepts many insurance carriers, including All Kids and Medicaid, and has resources to help those children who are not insured. To make an appointment, please call (312) 949-7990.
All CPS students entering kindergarten, 2nd grade and 6th grade are required to have a full dental examination. Families may be able to take advantage of mobile dental providers who visit CPS schools throughout the year. These dental professionals provide exams, cleanings and fluoride treatments at no cost to families. Parents should check with their child’s school for more details. Dental exams must be completed by May 15, 2014.
Where to Go
All CPS families are encouraged to have a primary care physician or “medical home” – a place where they can consistently access quality, affordable healthcare. For families who do not have a medical home, Back-to-School immunizations may be obtained through the following options:
COMMUNITY VACCINATION DRIVES
Saturday, August 17
- McKinley Park Field House
2210 W. Pershing Road
10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
- 4th Ward – King College Prep
4445 S. Drexel Boulevard
10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Thursday, August 22
- Englewood WIC – Lower Level
641 W. 63rd Street
11 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Friday, August 23
- Moos School
1711 N. California
10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Saturday, August 24
- 8th Ward – Jackson Park Hospital
7500 S. Cornell
10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
All children must be accompanied by a parent or guardian, and parents should remember to bring their children’s immunization records.
Families can also obtain immunizations by visiting one of the Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH) Fast-Track Clinics. For more information, including clinic locations, click here or call (312) 746-6129.
SCHOOL-BASED HEALTH CENTERS
Many school-based health centers are open to all CPS students. Students can receive back to school health services like immunizations, physical exams and sports physicals at these locations. For a complete list of CPS school-based health centers, click here