As the nicer weather begins to appear we often get periods of sunshine, particularly over the lunch time period even if it does not last for the full day.
Whilst we recognise that some sun is good for us, we are mindful of the importance of protecting the children in our care from over exposure to UV during outdoor play and activities.
Skin cancer is now the most common and fastest rising cancer in the UK. Malignant melanoma, the deadliest form of the disease is now the most common cancer in young adults aged 15-34. Burning as a young child can cause irreparable damage to a child’s delicate skin, that over time can develop with serious consequences.
However, the good news is that skin cancer is almost entirely preventable and simple steps can be undertaken to ensure that your child’s skin is protected from the sun’s harmful rays.
We therefore believe that together we have a duty of care to ensure that our children grow up with sufficient knowledge of sun safety and that all children at our school are adequately protected against the sun’s harmful rays. As such, we will be utilising the Sun Safe Schools advice to teach all children the necessary sun safe messages.
We ask therefore that all parents/carers provide both appropriate sun hats and quality sunscreen for their child/children that are to remain at school at all times during the months March through to the end of September. This is necessary to ensure that your child/children always have access to the appropriate items that will help protect them from over exposure to UV during outdoor activities and break times - the majority of which are taken at the hottest times of the day, when UV penetration is at its strongest.
Sun hats should be either legionnaire or broad brimmed, bucket style hats that shade the face, neck and ears. Sun hats will be worn during outdoor play/activities when UV levels are moderate i.e. 3 or above. Sunscreen should have a minimum sun protection factor (SPF) 30 with minimum 4 star UVA protection. Sunscreen will be applied by the children, supported by staff where appropriate, before extended periods of time outdoors such as lunch breaks when UV penetration is at its peak. Both these items should be labeled with your child’s name and class.
As part of our commitment to providing a sun safe environment we also recognise that role models have a key part to play in influencing children’s behaviour. It is therefore important that both teachers and parents are seen to be actively adopting the same sun safe practices.