North Dakota Schools Cannot Force Vaccination On Your Kids


I’ve had a number of SAB readers email me this afternoon about this article about students in Dickinson who may be kept out of school because they’re not in compliance with state law on vaccinations.

“Unvaccinated students to be kept out of school in Dickinson, N.D.” reads the headline.

“Students not fully up to date with their immunizations as required by state law will be asked to stay home from school effective Feb. 5,” Dickinson Press reporter Andrew Haffner writes noting that some 150 students are currently out of compliance.

Some of you are suggesting that this is the state forcing vaccination. It’s not. Really.

First let me say that, absent some specific medical issue, you should be vaccinating your kids. There is no really good reason not to, and a lot of excellent reasons to do so.

But beyond that, if you really don’t want to vaccinate, you really don’t have to. The state’s immunization requirements are covered in Chapter 23-07-17.1. of the North Dakota Century Code which includes this exemption:

So if you really can’t stand the idea of your kids getting vaccinated you don’t have to do it. Just send in a notice to the school stating your objections to vaccination and you’re in compliance.

Citing intellectual heavyweights like Jenny McCarthy or Jim Carey as part of your statement is optional, I’m assuming.