- The need for shade
- A shade project
Useful links for schools
This section provides setting-specific information for school communities embarking on a shade
The need for shade
Children spend a significant amount of time at school and are often outdoors when UV
radiation levels are at a peak. Childhood sun exposure can significantly increase the lifetime
risk of skin cancer and schools have a moral and legal duty to provide a safe environment for
the children in their care.
In recognition of these facts it is now commonplace for schools to have sun protection policies. Effective shade is an important component of a comprehensive sun protection policy.
A shade project
One of the key ingredients of a successful school shade project is a Shade
Audit which shows how your school’s outdoor areas are used, the types of activities that
occur and the skin cancer risk associated with those activities.
When the existing usage pattern and risks are understood it is possible to develop comprehensive
and effective shade solutions that meet your real needs and reduce existing risks. While each
area within a school will have its own shade requirements, each should be considered within
the context of the whole school site.
A typical amount of shade to ensure adequate shade protection would be approximately 2.5 square
metres per student, however the
adequacy of shade protection cannot be measured by area alone. Shade quality, shade location
and site usage patterns are also critical factors.
Establish a project team to undertake a shade audit and to oversee the project.
If possible include parents with relevant skills, such as architects, builders, landscape
designers or contractors, surveyors and tradesmen. The team will need access to representatives
from the school executive, teaching staff and the parent group.
Consult with students throughout the shade project. They are key participants
in the use of the site and can offer insights that assist the planning process.
WebShade offers significant learning opportunities to students, both with regard to preventing
skin cancer and within the general school curriculum, where the tasks required for shade planning
can have direct learning application.
Involve all the key people from the start to help ensure that effective shade
solutions are considered within the context of other issues, including any long term development
plans for the site.
The following information is available if you have a registered version of WebShade.
Register for WebShade
- Optimise the use of existing shade
- Open areas
- Quiet areas
- Fixed play equipment areas
- Canteen areas
- Sports fields and facilities
- Pedestrian links
- School bus stops
Useful links for schools