For a pdf version of the ARPS Update, please click here.
Para obtener una versión de la actualización de ARPS en español, haga clic aquí.
Para uma versão do ARPS Update em português, clique aqui.
The great news came out this week that both the FDA and the CDC have approved COVID-19 vaccines for children ages 5 to 11. This is the essential next step in protecting the health of our young students and increasing protection from COVID-19 for everyone. Municipalities, including the Amherst Board of Health, have received limited supplies of vaccine doses for this age group, and we will be sharing more information about the availability of those doses for our students next week. In the meantime, pharmacies have received much larger supplies and are already taking appointments for the 5-11 age group. The state has listed available appointments for this age group on their vaccine website.
On the topic of vaccines, I want to remind our ARPS families that December 1 is the exclusion deadline for students to be up-to-date on their mandatory vaccines in order to attend school. If your student is missing any of their required vaccines, you would have already received messages from your school nurse. Please remember to submit the required documentation to your school nurse ASAP, and no later than November 30. If you need assistance in obtaining any of the required vaccines, please remember the following resources:
- You can receive vaccines from your own medical provider through a nurse’s appointment rather than a doctor’s appointment. These are typically much easier to schedule on short notice. Local health practitioners have been notified of the ARPS vaccine exclusion date and are prepared to help families reach compliance by the deadline.
- Local pharmacies provide many vaccines, at no charge, in addition to the COVID-19 vaccine.
- The Amherst Health Department offers a COVID-19 vaccine clinic every Thursday from 3:00-6:00 p.m. for anyone aged 12 or older. They are available to members of any of our surrounding communities.
- The John P. Musante Health Center, located in the Bangs Community Center in Amherst, is a free clinic open to anyone without health insurance.
- The only exception for vaccine compliance is through a medical or religious exemption. A request for a medical exemption must come from your child’s doctor and must indicate that the vaccine(s) is medically contraindicated. Religious exemption requests must be submitted annually, in a paper copy, and must be signed and dated by the parent/caregiver. Emails or verbal requests are not acceptable for religious exemptions.
Thank you to everyone for helping to keep the ARPS community safe!