One of the first steps to creating a SunSmart School is to develop a policy that meets the recommendations of the Cancer Council Australia.
A sun protection policy should incorporate curriculum, behaviour and environmental strategies, and:
- Increase student and community awareness of sun protection issues.
- Encourage students, parents, teachers and staff to wear sun protective hats and clothing at high risk times.
- Work towards a safe school environment that provides shade for students and staff.
Developing a policy
Information on how to develop a policy will be provided as a case study later in this module.
It is important that your policy reflects a practical approach to sun protection and is supported within the school. This can be achieved by:
- Nominating a SunSmart representative(s) to work towards putting policy into practice.
- Educating the school community about the importance of the policy and what it involves. Information about the policy could be distributed to the school community through newsletters, pamphlets, classroom education and assembly presentations.
- Integrating sun protection education throughout the school curriculum.
- Involving the school community in policy development. The P&C may also play an active role in supporting policy development.
Once the policy has been established it is important to keep sun protection on the forefront of daily practice to avoid complacency. This may be achieved by:
- Running competitions which remind students and staff of the importance of sun protection.
- Officially launch the policy. This will assist in generating support from the school community.
- Hold a SunSmart theme day or activities once a year.