Tdap Vaccine REQUIRED for all 7th graders at Robert E. Howard Middle School


Proof of Tdap vaccine REQUIRED for all 7th graders

If your seventh-grade student does not have proof of the TDap Immunization on files, as required by law, your child may not be allowed to return to school until the proof is provided to the school

TDap is a booster vaccine that protects preteens and adults from the three dangerous diseases of tetanus, diphtheria, and whooping cough (also called pertussis). The Tdap immunization is usually given to children who are 11- or 12-years-old. Beginning in 2013, all South Carolina seventh grade students are now required to show proof of having the Tdap vaccine. Under the new requirement, any Tdap vaccine given on or after the seventh birthday will be accepted.

Please know that the district wants to support families any way it can in meeting this requirement. However, seventh grade students out of compliance with this state requirement may not be allowed to attend school until this proof is submitted. If you need information about additional clinic opportunities or have any concerns regarding transportation, please contact your school nurse at the school your child attends.


The Tdap vaccine can prevent tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis.

  • Diphtheria and pertussis spread from person to person. Tetanus enters the body through cuts or wounds.
  • TETANUS (T) causes painful stiffening of the muscles. Tetanus can lead to serious health problems, including being unable to open the mouth, having trouble swallowing and breathing, or death.
  • DIPHTHERIA (D) can lead to difficulty breathing, heart failure, paralysis, or death.
  • PERTUSSIS (aP), also known as "whooping cough," can cause uncontrollable, violent coughing which makes it hard to breathe, eat, or drink. Pertussis can be extremely serious in babies and young children, causing pneumonia, convulsions, brain damage, or death. In teens and adults, it can cause weight loss, loss of bladder control, passing out, and rib fractures from severe coughing.

Vaccine specifics

Tdap is only for children 7 years and older, adolescents, and adults.

Adolescents should receive a single dose of Tdap, preferably at age 11 or 12 years.

Pregnant women should get a dose of Tdap during every pregnancy, to protect the newborn from pertussis. Infants are most at risk for severe, life-threatening complications from pertussis.

Adults who have never received Tdap should get a dose of Tdap.

Also, adults should receive a booster dose every 10 years, or earlier in the case of a severe and dirty wound or burn. Booster doses can be either Tdap or Td (a different vaccine that protects against tetanus and diphtheria but not pertussis).

Tdap may be given at the same time as other vaccines.

Talk with your health care provider

For additional information on the Tdap Vaccine, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) Tdap Vaccine Information Statement (VIS)