WIMMERA primary school are excited to protect pupils this summer with a new shade for the playground.
Horsham West and Haven Primary School will get $14,000 to install a shade sail over the existing playground at the Haven Campus.
Assistant Principal Craig Amos said the school would add the Victorian Government grant to funds from the Haven Campus Parent Club, the students Junior School Council and the School Council.
"These funds will will help to bring this shade sail project to fruition," he said.
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"The shade sail will be built over the most popular playground in our school yard."
The school hopes it can complete the project during term four or over the holidays, ready for the 2022 school year.
"Haven staff member, Mrs Breanne Mills has been the driving force behind applying for this Department of Health grant," Mr Amos explained.
"She is hoping that it enables our playground to be used more regularly in warmer weather and that students are well protected from the sun when they play.
"Mrs Mills made mention of the harsh Wimmera sunshine in the application.
"Having this area protected from the harsh sun will help us have more flexibility in areas our students can play in during the warmer months."
Childhood and adolescence are critical periods during which exposure to UV radiation is more likely to contribute to skin cancer later in life. Schools play an essential role in teaching effective sun-smart behaviours from an early age.
Shade alone can reduce overall exposure to UV radiation by up to 75 per cent when combined with other sun protection strategies such as sunscreen, hats, sunglasses and protective clothing.
While the shade sail for Horsham West and Haven Primary School Haven campus is designated for the playground, Mr Amos said the school hoped to utilise outdoor spaces for education.
"The school is currently looking at a further project that will create an outdoor learning and assembly space for use in our teaching and learning program," he said.
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