Sun Protection Policy
Too much exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun causes sunburn, skin damage and increases the risk of skin cancer. Sun exposure in the first 15 years of life contributes significantly to the lifetime risk of developing skin cancer. Australia has the highest rate of skin cancer in the world.
- Skin cancers account for 80% of all new cancers diagnosed in Australia each year.
- Melanoma is the most diagnosed cancer for 15 – 44 year olds.
- This policy is applicable all year round in the Territory.
- NPS SunSmart Policy
The goals of the Sun Smart Policy are to:
- Increase student and community awareness about skin cancer and sun protection
- Encourage the entire school community to use a combination of sun protection measures all year
- Work towards a safe school environment providing shade for the school community
- Assist students to be responsible for their own sun protection
- Ensure that families and new staff are informed of the SunSmart policy.
Sun Protection Strategies
- All students and staff to use a combination of sun protection measures throughout the day to ensure they are well protected especially between 10-3 when UV levels reach their peak.
- The Sun Smart policy is to be considered when planning all outdoor events e.g. assemblies, camps, excursions and sporting events. Where possible have outdoor activities or events earlier in the morning or later in the afternoon, and use indoor venues.
The School Council and school staff ensure there are sufficient shelters and approved/ safe trees providing shade in the school grounds especially where students congregate e.g. basketball, netball and handball courts, canteen, sandpit and popular play areas.
- In consultation with the School Council, shade provision is considered in plans for future buildings and grounds and when planning excursions and outdoor activities.
- Students are actively encouraged to use available areas of shade when outside.
Students who do not have appropriate hats or outdoor clothing are asked to stay in an area protected from the sun at school and when on excursions.
All styles of school uniform will include collars that protect the neck, and sleeves.
- Shorts, dresses and skirt lengths will extend as close to the knee as possible.
- School clothing is made of close weave fabric. Rash vests or t-shirts will also be worn when swimming outdoors.
(Please note: Cap sleeves are not considered sun protective and are therefore not acceptable).
- As part of the school uniform, students are required to wear hats that protect their face, neck and ears, i.e. bucket or broad-brimmed style whenever they are outside.
- (Please note: Baseball caps are not considered sun protective and are therefore not acceptable).
- Students who do not have an appropriate sun protective hat will have to stay in a permanently shaded area only (during class time) and in the assembly area during break times.
4. Sunglasses (Recommended)
Students and staff are encouraged to wear close fitting, wrap-around sunglasses that meet the Australian Standard 1067 (Sunglasses: Category 2, 3 or 4) and cover as much of the eye area as possible.
Students are encouraged to bring to school and use SPF 30+ broad spectrum, water resistant sunscreen. The use of sunscreen is strongly recommended for outdoor activities such as the Swim and Survive Program; Sports Day; Fun Run etc. Sunscreen needs to be applied at least 20 minutes before going outdoors and reapplied every two hours as required. Time will be allocated for sunscreen application prior to outdoor activities.
Staff act as role models by:
- Wearing sun protective hats (as per the uniform policy), and sunglasses outside
- Applying SPF 30+ broad spectrum, water resistant sunscreen
- Seeking shade whenever possible
- Wearing Sun Smart clothing e.g. clothing covering the shoulders with a collar and sleeves.
- Families and visitors are encouraged to use a combination of sun protection measures when participating in and attending outdoor school activities.
- Sun protection and skin cancer awareness programs are incorporated into appropriate areas of the school curriculum and taught incidentally whenever an opportunity arises.
- Students are encouraged to be involved in initiatives that promote and model sun protection measures to the whole school community.
- Sun Smart behaviour is regularly reinforced and promoted to the whole school community through newsletters, meetings, school assemblies and on student enrolment.
The School Council and staff monitor and review the effectiveness of the sun protection policy every two years and revise the policy when required.