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  #1  
Old 02-02-2020, 08:03 AM
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Default Vaccine Exemption

Can a daycare/preschool refuse your child if you have a vaccine exemption form from the state?
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Old 02-02-2020, 09:26 AM
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In which state do you reside?
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Old 02-02-2020, 09:38 AM
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In which state do you reside?
Texas
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Old 02-02-2020, 09:51 AM
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Texas allows for exceptions and federal laws that prevent discrimination on the basis of religion would present an issue of a provider rejecting a child from their business.

It could be a problem if the Parents want to make a federal or state issue of it. I think as it being your business you should have the right to decline anyone but I think in this case a parent could present a problem if they know the law and want to fight you on it. Here is a helpful link: https://www.texansforvaccinechoice.c...n-information/

Do all childcare facilities/preschools have to accept the exemption form?

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Current state law requires that childcare facilities and preschools that are licensed by the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) to accept the exemption form. However, TFVC has received reports from members across the state that some facilities are choosing not to abide by this law and instead are denying exemptions. Your best option is to fully vet a facility, either with a phone call or web page search, on their policies before enrollment or paying any sort of deposit or other fees.

Source: Human Resources Code Sec. 42.043 and Texas Administrative Code, Title 40, Part 19, Chapter 746, Subchapter C, Division 1, Rule §746.615

Last edited by Michael; 02-02-2020 at 11:27 AM.
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Old 02-02-2020, 09:56 AM
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Yes.

https://dshs.texas.gov/immunize/scho...uirements.aspx
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Old 02-02-2020, 10:21 AM
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That only shows the required immunizations but doesn’t state anything about the exemption form from the state.
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Old 02-02-2020, 10:27 AM
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That only shows the required immunizations but doesn’t state anything about the exemption form from the state.
We are not required to enroll anyone. Vaccine status is not protected under ADA. Private business owners can make their own decision.
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Old 02-02-2020, 03:47 PM
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In my state, if you claim a religious exemption and fill out the form, we are required to enroll you to avoid religious discrimination. I am not in Texas.
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Old 02-03-2020, 06:18 PM
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In my state, if you claim a religious exemption and fill out the form, we are required to enroll you to avoid religious discrimination. I am not in Texas.
There are very few religions that actually do not allow vaccinations. Like VERY few.
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Old 02-04-2020, 02:38 AM
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In my state, if you claim a religious exemption and fill out the form, we are required to enroll you to avoid religious discrimination. I am not in Texas.
You are not required to take them over other families. You can interview and choose the best fit for your program. A person's religion is not a free pass, it simply is not a valid or ethical reason to pass someone over.

Ex: I enroll infants over toddlers because I prefer longevity with clients, I want them to stay until kindergarten. I want them to grow up on my food and routines to have a smooth, peaceful program. I want this to be their second home. If a toddler came to interview with a true signed/notarized religious waiver, I'd still go with the infant and vice versa. It isn't discriminatory, it is about my program goals. Full-time over part-time attendance. Infants over toddlers. Shorter work hours over open to close hours.
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Old 02-04-2020, 06:06 AM
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There are very few religions that actually do not allow vaccinations. Like VERY few.
Legally you are not allowed to ask what their religion is though.
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Old 02-04-2020, 07:20 AM
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Legally you are not allowed to ask what their religion is though.
I didn't say to ask. I just said there are very few religions that don't allow vaccinations.

Of the two religions I am aware of there are other factors in which you wouldn't have to ask but would already know the family was part of that religion as there are other restrictions as well.
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Old 02-04-2020, 09:03 AM
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There are very few religions that actually do not allow vaccinations. Like VERY few.
The state does not require them to declare a denomination, quote scripture, or otherwise specify. The form used by the state to allow for this exclusion merely says “my personal religious beliefs.”
Our official inspection guidelines issued by the state, my licensor, and her supervisor all say that if we do not enroll a child because they choose not to vaccinate for “personal religious reasons” then we are violating religious discrimination laws in our state.
Like CatHerder said, we can conduct a thorough interview and select based on “best fit” for our environment overall. If we choose a family and then find out they use this exclusion and then deny them for that, the family could make a case if they chose to.
All of this to say to the OP: ask your licensor what your state laws are.
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Old 02-04-2020, 09:22 AM
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Originally Posted by PB&J View Post
The state does not require them to declare a denomination, quote scripture, or otherwise specify. The form used by the state to allow for this exclusion merely says “my personal religious beliefs.”
Our official inspection guidelines issued by the state, my licensor, and her supervisor all say that if we do not enroll a child because they choose not to vaccinate for “personal religious reasons” then we are violating religious discrimination laws in our state.
Like CatHerder said, we can conduct a thorough interview and select based on “best fit” for our environment overall. If we choose a family and then find out they use this exclusion and then deny them for that, the family could make a case if they chose to.
All of this to say to the OP: ask your licensor what your state laws are.
As I stated above..... you don't need to ask them anything.
I am not suggesting anyone ask.
Nor am I stating a family must declare anything.

The religions that do not support vaccinations have other limitations (for example dietary restrictions) etc so you would know based on that.
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Old 02-04-2020, 09:34 AM
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Originally Posted by Cat Herder View Post
I enroll infants over toddlers because I prefer longevity with clients, I want them to stay until kindergarten. I want them to grow up on my food and routines to have a smooth, peaceful program. I want this to be their second home.
I prefer and miss the longevity too. My kids used to stay with me until kindergarten which was nice for many reasons. Once universal prek started, they began leaving at 4y. And these days families are transient- relocating due to job or for suburban life which has increased turnover. It feels like I am constantly enrolling and transitioning new families...
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Old 02-04-2020, 10:11 AM
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I prefer and miss the longevity too. My kids used to stay with me until kindergarten which was nice for many reasons. Once universal prek started, they began leaving at 4y. And these days families are transient- relocating due to job or for suburban life which has increased turnover. It feels like I am constantly enrolling and transitioning new families...
Our pre-k only goes half-day which creates transportation issues if they have more than one child. They also charge as much for aftercare as I do for full-time care and close over twice as many days per year. Then the parents still have to find summer care. Free becomes pretty expensive quickly.

I find once they are enrolled, they tend to stay, especially since I use the exact same state curriculum program and paperwork they do. We are also rural, not a lot of employment options, so most commute to work for better pay while keeping affordable housing options.
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Old 02-04-2020, 10:30 AM
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As I stated above..... you don't need to ask them anything.
I am not suggesting anyone ask.
Nor am I stating a family must declare anything.

The religions that do not support vaccinations have other limitations (for example dietary restrictions) etc so you would know based on that.
Very true! No, they don’t have to declare anything; just submit that form with their enrollment papers. They don’t have to belong to any of the religions you may be referring to. So it might be clear (if they belong to one of those religions) that they have immunization, dietary, or other restrictions that could make them a “bad fit” .... it also could be very UNclear that they will state a “personal religious belief” in this one area only. The state I live in makes that very easy. The interview process is very important, if immunization status is important to your home.
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Old 02-04-2020, 11:28 AM
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Very true! No, they don’t have to declare anything; just submit that form with their enrollment papers. They don’t have to belong to any of the religions you may be referring to. So it might be clear (if they belong to one of those religions) that they have immunization, dietary, or other restrictions that could make them a “bad fit” .... it also could be very UNclear that they will state a “personal religious belief” in this one area only. The state I live in makes that very easy. The interview process is very important, if immunization status is important to your home.

I just state upfront my program does not accept non-vaccinated children.
Don’t care why they don’t immunize.
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Old 02-04-2020, 03:06 PM
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I just state upfront my program does not accept non-vaccinated children.
Don’t care why they don’t immunize.
That was my policy. My licensor said Big No. I said if I had a shop that painted cars blue, people couldn’t come in and demand a black paint job because their religion prohibited bright colors!
If they just won’t vaccinate I can exclude. If they fill out the state declaration of personal religious belief, I cannot.
I told her to show me the reg. She did. (And I believe I posted it in another thread). I had her contact the regional supervisor. No go in my state. That was as far as I had the time and energy to take it.
So now, because of this and many many of the other regs we have to work around and find loopholes for, our interview process became more thorough.
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