At Archbishop Cranmer, we want our pupils, staff, parents and carers to enjoy the sun safely. Educating our pupils on the importance of this, including how to reduce the risk of skin damage and about safe and unsafe exposure to the sun is part of our Relationships and Health Education (RHE) curriculum and commitment to safeguarding. We also believe that schools have a central role in this because:
- Children are at school five out of seven days a week at times when UV rays are high
- Most damage due to sun exposure occurs during school years
- Schools can play a significant role in changing behaviours through role modelling and education
- Pupils and teachers are at risk of sunburn within 10-15 minutes of being exposed to strong sunlight – most break times are at least that long
- Pupils spend an average of 1.5 hours outside per day, more if involved in sports or outdoor activities.
- Research has shown that sun exposure in the first 15 years of life contributes significantly to the lifetime risk of skin cancer.
This is why every year, we work with staff, pupils and parents to promote SunSmart behaviour and raise awareness of the risks posed by too much sun. We do this in the following ways:
Our HeartSmart RHE Curriculum
Through our PSHE (RHE) lessons, we learn about safe and unsafe exposure to the sun, and how to reduce the risk of sun damage, including skin cancer. This features as part of our Summer Term 1 'Fake is a Mistake' curriculum in Year 2 where the children use drama to learn about the important items we need to remember to stay sun safe.
A SunSmart Curriculum
Often, the best way to protect children is to help them take a reasonable level of interest and responsibility for keeping themselves safe. Our curriculum does this by ensuring that:
- We talk about how to be SunSmart with all pupils in assemblies every year during the summer term.
- Encouraging pupils to wear hats, sunglasses and sun cream and to keep well-hydrated during the summer months.
- SunSmart assemblies are followed up with age-appropriate, cross-curricular activity sessions to help our children remember the key messages about sun safety which we make memorable with the following ‘motto’: ‘Wrap, Splat and Hat!’
- Wrap – Children are reminded that they should cover up with light clothing if they are going to be spending longer than 10-15 minutes outside
- Splat – Children are reminded of the importance of applying SPF 15+ sun cream and drinking plenty of water if they are out in the sun
- Hat - Children are reminded of the need to wear a hat for all outdoor activities in the summer term to prevent sunstroke
Risk Reduction Measures
- Shade - children are encouraged to sit in the shade in the playground and field on hot days and are requested to do this when staff notice that individuals have not sought shade for a while or look hot.
- Sun shades (natural and man-made) are available for children to sit under.
- The availability of shade is considered when planning excursions and all outdoor activities.
- Indoor alternatives – on days when the sun is particularly fierce or temperatures very high, staff supervising break times will reduce the amount of time spent outside by bringing children inside to play with friends for the remainder of the break time.
- Access to water – children are encouraged to take water bottles with them wherever they go during the summer term so that they do not become dehydrated. so that they do not become dehydrated.
- Sun cream – members of staff remind children to re-apply sun cream before outdoor break times
Members of staff are encouraged to act as role models by:
- Wearing protective hats and clothing when outside
- Applying SPF 15+ sunscreen
- Seeking shade whenever possible / appropriate
The following web links will provide further useful information for parents and carers: