Sun Smart Policy

This policy applies to all school events on and off site.

Rationale

A balance of ultraviolet radiation (UV) exposure is important for health. Too much of the sun’s UV can cause sunburn, skin and eye damage and skin cancer. Sun exposure in the first 10 years of life is a major factor in determining future skin cancer risk.
Too little UV from the sun can lead to low vitamin D levels. Vitamin D is essential for healthy bones and muscles, and for general health.

Objectives

This SunSmart Policy has been developed to:

  • Ensure all students and staff have some UV exposure for vitamin D.
  • Encourage the entire school community to use a combination of sun protection measures whenever UV Index levels reach 3 and above.
  • Work towards a safe school environment that provides shade for students, staff and the school community at appropriate times.
  • Assist students to be responsible for their own sun protection.
  • Ensure that families and new staff are informed of the school’s SunSmart policy.

Staff are encouraged to access the SunSmart UV Alert at sunsmart.com.au to find out daily local sun protection times to assist with the implementation of this policy.

Policy

We use a combination of sun protection measures for all outdoor activities from September to the end of April and whenever UV levels reach 3 and above, the level that can damage skin and eyes.

1. Shade

  • A shade audit is conducted annually to determine the current availability and quality of shade as part of Building and Grounds.
  • The school community makes sure there is a sufficient number of shelters and trees providing shade in the school grounds particularly in areas where students congregate e.g. lunch areas, cafeteria, outdoor lesson areas and popular recreation areas.
  • In consultation with the school community, shade provision is considered in plans for future buildings and grounds.
  • Students are encouraged to use available areas of shade when outside.

2. Clothing

  • Sun protective clothing is included in our school uniform and sports uniform. School clothing is cool, loose fitting and made of densely woven fabric. During Physical Education, students are supplied with sunscreen and are encouraged to wear hats and sunglasses. All teachers in this school model the SunSmart strategies.

3. Hats

  • The school uniform shop has a variety of hats for purchase. Students are educated by Health and Physical Education staff to wear hats in Physical Education classes.
  • Students are encouraged by teachers of all other learning areas to wear hats when outdoors.

4. Sunscreen

  • The school community provides the Health and Physical Education learning area with sunscreen for use in their programs. Health and Physical Education teachers model correct SunSmart strategies and insist students apply sunscreen.
  • Strategies are in place to remind students to apply sunscreen before going outdoors in other learning areas.

5. Excursions

  • Letters to parents/guardians informs them that sun protection is required for an excursion (where appropriate) and if students need to supply their own protection.
  • The availability of shade is considered when planning excursions or outdoor activities.
  • Sunscreen is housed in Rossmoyne Senior High School buses for excursions. It is the responsibility of the teacher-in-charge of excursion to an ensure supply is current and available.
  • Students with Special Needs: Students with medical issues should have these issues recorded on their school medical profile.

6. Health and Physical Education Programming

  • The Head, Health and Physical Education structures programs so that during the months of January-April, students do physical activity in shaded areas or in the swimming pool.
  • All HPE teachers insist that students apply sunscreen when in the swimming pool and when, in their judgement, conditions in the sun are likely to be harmful.
  • Rash vests are strongly encouraged.
  • When not in the swimming pool, shaded areas are utilised.
  • It is not possible to avoid having physical education classes in the middle of the day.
  • HPE teachers model and reinforce the sun safe message.
  • Students with Special Needs: Students with medical issues should have these issues recorded on their school medical profile. This includes students using the acne treatment Roacataine as these students cannot be exposed to the sun and their medical records should reflect this information. It is recommended that parents also inform the HPE teacher of any issues. HPE is a compulsory part of the curriculum in Australia and exemptions from HPE will only be given when supported by an appropriate medical specialist.

7. Medications

  • Some medications render students sun sensitive (eg. Roaccutane, Doxycycline, Metronidaz). Parents are asked to inform the appropriate Year Coordinator if a student is on sun sensitive medication so it can be included on excursion medical records.
  • A student’s Physical Education teacher should be informed if a student is taking a sun sensitive medication.
  • Where appropriate, sunscreen and long – length clothing is recommended when sun exposure cannot be avoided.