Slipping into sun sense

Condong Public School student Georgia Felton shows why she is Sun Smart.
Condong Public School student Georgia Felton shows why she is Sun Smart.

STUDENTS and teachers at Condong Public School sure know how to slip, slop, slap.

This is why the small school was yesterday accredited in the NSW Cancer Council SunSmart Primary School Program.

Principal Terry Timms said the program involves students, teachers and par- ents working together to reduce children's exposure to harmful UV rays during the school day.

“Condong Public School has developed a 10-point sun-protection plan, reflecting Cancer Council recommendations to reinforce the school's commitment to protecting staff and students each and every day,” Mr Timms said.

“We reviewed our process earlier this year and took on suggestions from the Cancer Council. Not a lot of things have changed; we've always provided sunscreen at carni- vals and had a no-hat-no-play' policy.”

The plan also includes safe scheduling of outdoor activities, effective use of shade, sun-safe clothing, promoting sunglasses, role-modelling by staff, and teaching sun protection to students in all years.

Corinne Martin from Cancer Council Far North Coast said, with Australia having the highest level of skin cancer in the world, this program is about helping schools to protect children from skin cancer at an early age.

“A child's skin is the most vulnerable to sun damage during their school years, and as children spend lots of time outdoors it is vital for them to adopt sun safety measures such as wearing a hat, sunglasses and sunscreen,” Ms Martin said.

“This program will help Condong Public School to do just that. The SunSmart program gives students practical tips and lessons on how to avoid sunburn, while teachers benefit from an effective checklist that covers all areas of sun safety at school.

“In the long run, we ultimately hope the program will help to reduce local skin cancer rates among the next generation of adults.”

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