In 1922 the constitutionality of childhood vaccination would be examined in the Supreme Court case Zucht v. King. The court decided that a school could deny admission to children who failed to provide a certification of vaccination for the protection of the public health. In 1987, a measles epidemic occurred in Maricopa County, Arizona and another court case, Maricopa County Health Department vs. Harmon, would examine the arguments of an individuals right to education over the states need to protect against the spread of disease. The court decided that it is prudent to take action to combat the spread of disease by denying un-vaccinated children back to school until the risk for the spread of measles was confirmed.
Currently, in a push to eradicate Pertussis, Tetanus, Diphtheria, Polio, Measles, Mumps, Rubella, Varicella, and Hepatitis B from the population, schools across the United States require an updated immunization record for all incoming and returning students.
While all states require an immunization record, this does not mean that all students must get vaccinated. Opting out is a state-by-state law; some states allow parents to opt out for a variety of reasons, but all states do require an immunization record at schools.
Some of the exemptions for opting out of vaccination is due to medical conditions that increase the risk of having an adverse health effect or reaction due to the vaccine. Other reasons consist of religious beliefs and personal philosophical opposition to mandatory vaccination.
As of 2014, 48 states allow religious exemptions except for Mississippi and West Virginia and some states even require proof of religious membership.
In addition, only 18 states allow personal philosophical opposition to vaccination as a form of exemption.
Overall,there are ethical debates and objections to the required school vaccinations laws because of different religious or philosophical beliefs and the infringement on individual liberties still persist.