GREENVLLE, N.C. (WNCT) – Pitt County health officials are encouraging everyone to make sure students up to date on their required vaccinations before school starts on Monday.

North Carolina law requires all students in the state to have certain immunizations for the new school year.

Laurie Reed, manager for the ECU Health Medical Center School Health Program, said students starting kindergarten need several vaccinations.

“They would need to receive Tdap, which is the diphtheria tetanus and pertussis vaccine, polio vaccines, MMR vaccines, hepatitis B, varicella,” said Reed. “And for those students that are under the age of five, they would need also a HIV vaccines and the pneumococcal vaccines.”

Seventh- and 12th- graders also need certain vaccinations.

“Those would be a Tdap booster — so that’s that tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis vaccine,” Reed said. “And then there’s also a meningitis vaccine and MCV vaccine that is required for our students entering the seventh grade, or when they turn 12 years old, they can receive those vaccines.”

The final requirement for entering 12th grade is to receive a booster of the meningitis vaccine. State law requires students who haven’t been vaccinated to be excluded from school until vaccinations are received.

For a possible exemption from vaccines due to medical or religious reasons, a written statement is needed.

“The school will then turn around and we would submit that to the health department as well. We don’t make the final call at the school level about whether an exemption is accepted or not. We do turn that on over to the health department and they send it into the state immunization branch who then makes that that decision,” said Reed.

COVID-19 vaccinations are not required for Pitt County students. For a full list of required vaccines click here.

To view a schedule of drive-up vaccine clinics in Pitt County visit Pitt County Schools Drive-Up Immunizations