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Schools Recognized for Sun Safety Education

Release Date: 06/13/2003
Contact Information:

David Deegan, 202-564-7839

(06/13/03) Educating children about skin cancer is particularly important since most of the average person's lifetime sun exposure occurs before the age of 18. “SunWise” is a partnership program with EPA and local schools to sponsor classroom and community activities to raise children's awareness of stratospheric ozone depletion, UV radiation and simple sun care strategies. Winners of two categories of the first annual SunWise Awards have been announced this month, recognizing14 schools for outstanding efforts in teaching sun safe behaviors. “Helios Awards” are given to schools that change school policy to involve parents and the community to erect shade structures on school playgrounds, and allow sun screen to be worn in school. The 2003 “Helio” winners are: the Merryhill School in Davis, Calif., Bryon A. Barry Elementary in Phoenix, Ariz., and the Center for Creative Learning in St Louis, Mo. “Shining Star Awards” are given to schools that reach a large number of students by reporting UV data to EPA’s web site, sponsoring poster contests or developing curriculum. The 2003 “Shining Star” schools are: Larson Middle School in Troy Mich., North Catholic High School in Pittsburgh Pa., Sacred Heart in Louisville Ky., Harrington Elementary in Denver, Colo., Geneva Elementary School in Bellingham Wash., George School in Westwood N.J., Charlotte A. Dunning Elementary in Framingham Mass., Marin County Office of Education in San Rafael Calif., San Simon School in San Simon Ariz., Gus Garcia Middle School in San Antonio Texas and Goddard Middle School in Glendora, Calif. First launched nationally in May 2000, the SunWise School Program is an environmental and health education program designed to teach children and their caregivers how to protect themselves from overexposure to the sun’s harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays, which can cause serious health effects, including skin cancer. For more information, visit: .