Parents say Maple Heights student mistakenly removed from school for not being properly vaccinated

Posted at 11:23 PM, Oct 18, 2016
and last updated 2016-10-18 23:26:17-04

A Maple Heights mother told News 5 that a paperwork error was to blame for her third grader being quarantined and removed from school for two days because staff believed that he had not been properly vaccinated. 

According to Cleveland Clinic medical records dated Aug. 25, 8-year-old TJ Owens was up-to-date with his vaccinations required by the state of Ohio to attend third grade at John F. Kennedy Elementary in Maple Heights. 

But on Monday morning, staff called the boy’s mother, Michelle Owens, to ask her to pick up her son from school. He had been quarantined from his class because their records indicated that they hadn’t received the proper doses of the Measles, Mumps and Rubella vaccines. 

“I couldn’t even go to the bathroom, I couldn’t even go to recess I couldn’t even eat my lunch until i was done with everything,” the student told News 5. “I felt left out.” 

After two days of missed school for TJ, lost work for his parents and dozens of phone calls, Owens said she was able to verify with the school that he had in fact been fully immunized and had sent documentation of his vaccinations to the school within the appropriate window. 

“No one offered us an answer, no one offered us an apology they just said, ‘Okay it’s fixed now let me make a copy,’” Owens said. 

News 5 reached out to the school’s principal, who forwarded a request for comment to the Maple Heights City Schools Superintendent. Dr. Charles Keenan told News 5 that he could not comment on any students medical records but offered to personally help the Owens family try to resolve any issue that may have occurred. 

TJ is now set to return to school on Wednesday, but his mother hopes that her family’s story will help prevent other students from having to suffer through a similar quarantine.

“I don’t want other children to experience that because its a traumatic experience,” Owens said.