How to Protect Your Child from the Sun at School

Ask Your Physician to Sign a Sun Protection Permission Form 

School Sun SafetyBecause many schools don’t allow students to use sunscreen or wear a hat outdoors during the school day without written permission from a physician, The Skin Cancer Foundation has created a sun protection form that parents and doctors can sign, allowing students to bring these items to school, apply and use as needed.

Download the Sun Protection Form and ask your physician to sign it

“Every child should have access to proper sun protection at school,” says Perry Robins, MD, President of The Skin Cancer Foundation. “Alarmingly, California is the only state with legislation that gives children the right to take sun protection measures at school. Given the absence of similar legislation in other states, the Foundation hopes to fill this void by providing parents with the necessary means to ensure their children stay safe in the sun at school.” 

During a typical school day, it’s not unusual for children to receive a significant amount of sun exposure. Children in elementary school typically have outdoor recess between 10 AM and 2 PM, a time when the sun is especially intense. Proper sun protection in childhood can drastically reduce the risk of developing skin cancer as an adult. Suffering just one blistering sunburn in childhood or adolescence more than doubles a person’s risk of developing melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer, later in life.

The Skin Cancer Foundation has always recommended that everyone, regardless of age and skin color, adopt a complete sun protection regimen. At school, children should be able to cover-up with protective clothing, including broad-brimmed hats and UV-blocking sunglasses. Additionally, they should wear a broad-spectrum SPF 15 sunscreen every day, and be allowed to bring it to school for easy reapplication. The Skin Cancer Foundation’s Sun Protection Form ensures that children have access to recommended sun safety measures.