Do students and staff need to wear sun protective hats in terms 2 and 3 in WA schools?
Our advice to wear hats is based on guidance from the World Health Organization and from Australian experts in the fields of skin cancer, vitamin D and bone density. They agree that sun protection is required the UV Index is 3 or above.
For areas north of Perth, winter days will on average exceed 3 at midday. As such, these schools should encourage students and staff to wear hats year-round.
Perth and all areas to the south can experience average midday UV readings of less than 3 in June and July. For these two months only, it is acceptable to go without sun protection while outside. It is up to individual schools as to whether hat wearing is required during these times.
Remember, it is important to wear a hat if you are going outside when the UV Index is 3 or higher. A hard thing to get used to is that UV is not the same as heat, so it’s a big mistake to base your sun protection choices on the temperature for the day. This is why the SunSmart message is cover up when the UV is 3 or above – it’s got nothing to do with heat.
A really great website for learning about the UV Index, including finding out what the UV is right now, is www.myuv.com.au Also, you can download the SunSmart App from the App Store and Google Play Store