Student COVID-19 Vaccination Requirements

VAX PortalCPS’ priority is to maximize opportunities for safe, in-person learning so we can remain focused on helping every student recover and thrive in school. Vaccinations are one of our most effective tools to reduce the spread and impact of COVID-19. Vaccinations are widely available: find a location using the Vaccination Finder.

CPS requires all students ages 5+ to be fully vaccinated in order to participate in CPS-sponsored before and afterschool activities, including athletics, clubs, visual and performing arts programs, and school-sponsored social events.

  • Students must be fully vaccinated by the “first in-person activity” for that sport, program, or club. This might be the first tryout, practice, or rehearsal of the season or semester.
  • If, during the season or fall semester, students’ become eligible for boosters, they are strongly encouraged to get boosted and stay up-to-date on the vaccination. However, they will not be penalized if they do not receive the booster mid-season or mid-semester, and can continue to participate.
  • If you receive your vaccination or booster in Massachusetts, you do not need to upload your vaccination card.
  • If you are vaccinated out-of-state or internationally, or wish to request an exemption from this requirement, please visit the CPS Family Portal. You can also provide printed copies of your exemption requests to the athletics office, Visual and Performing Arts office, CRLS Learning community clerks, or upper school clerks. 

Families may request exemptions for this requirement.

  • Religious Exemption: Explanation in writing from a parent/guardian that a vaccine conflicts with their sincerely held religious belief (in alignment with state law)
  • Medical Exemption: Clear documentation from a doctor or health care provider of a medical condition that makes vaccination risky or unsafe.
  • Students with special needs: Clear documentation from a doctor or health care provider of an issue that would serve as a barrier to vaccination. Vaccination deadlines are different for different activities.
  • Recent COVID Cases: Per the CDC, students who have experienced a COVID infection may consider delaying their vaccination by 3 months from when symptoms started or when they received a positive test. Students who tested positive in the 90 days before the first in-person activity may request a “recent infection” exemption from the vaccination requirement. 
Vaccination requirements apply to these activities
Vaccination requirements do not apply to these CPS-sponsored activities
  • School-sponsored social events
  • Intramural and interscholastic athletics
  • Visual & Performing Arts (VPA) programs/activities
  • School-sponsored clubs
  • VPA programs/activities
  • Before- and after-school programs that serve a primarily child-care purpose
  • All activities for 3- and 4-year olds
  • Credit-bearing VPA courses with afterschool requirements including rehearsals and performances
  • Selected school-based academic programs designed for specific instructional purposes supporting English language learners or students with special needs.
  • After-school activities taking place at CPS facilities that are sponsored or conducted by any non-CPS organization such as the Department of Human Services Program (DHSP), nonprofit organizations, or other third parties.
  • Field trips

There are three ways to submit students’ vaccination information or exemption requests.

  • Families can submit information via the Family Portal.
  • Students ages 18+ may submit their information through a special student link via the Family Portal.
  • Students and families may provide printed copies of their vaccination information or exemption requests to school as follows:
    • The athletics office
    • The Visual and Performing Arts office
    • High School students: your Learning Community clerk
    • Upper Schools students: your school clerk

Please be patient as we work together to collect and review student vaccination information.

  • We prefer you submit information electronically through the Family Portal to reduce paperwork for our very busy staff.
  • If you have already submitted your proof of vaccination to your school nurse, you DO NOT need to resubmit this information.
  • It will take some time for our school teams, including our school nurses, to review and approve vaccination information for our students.

Vaccination Opportunities
Families can access vaccines in the following ways:

  • Your primary health care provider
  • Several additional locations in Cambridge and neighboring communities are also offering Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines:
    • Cambridge Health Alliance: CHA Somerville Vaccine Center, 176 Somerville Ave, Somerville (next to Target), Mon & Tues: 11AM - 6:30PM, Wed, Thu, & Fri: 8:30AM - 4PM. Walk-ins or appointments. To pre-register: CHA Patients or Non-CHA patients
    • CVS: 624 Mass. Ave (Central Square) (also many other locations in neighboring communities)
    • Appointments required. Schedule an appointment here.
    • Star Market (Osco Pharmacy): 699 Mount Auburn Street, Cambridge (also many other locations in neighboring communities). Walk-ins or appointments. Schedule an appointment here.
  • Student Vaccination Finder
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