Schools' Stupid Sunscreen Policy Sends Kids To Hospital With Severe Sunburns
School Sunscreen Policy to Blame for Kids' Severe Sunburn?
One mom learned the hard way that her kids' school's sunscreen policy was lacking -- her children came home from school so badly sunburned, they had to go to the hospital.
Jesse Michener explained that it was raining in the morning, so she didn't apply the sunscreen for the year end field day at school.
When her kids came home, two of them were so severely burned, they went to the hospital.
Michener tells Yahoo! Shine, "We've never done a field day at the school before. They were outside for over five hours."
She described the sunburns on her blog, writing: "Two of my three children experienced significant sunburns. Like, hurts-to-look-at burns. Violet is starting to blister on her face."
Additionally, she noted that both girls experienced "headaches, chills and pain" and stayed home from school the next day.
One of Michener's daughters has a form of Albinism, which teachers and staff of her school are aware of. Her mom even has a "504 plan" written agreement with the school.
Students, however, were not allowed to come inside or apply sunscreen to themselves, as Michener explained, "My children indicated that several adults commented on their burns at school, including staff and other parents."
Tacoma Public School district spokesman Dan Voelpel tells Yahoo! Shine that the school sunscreen policy does not allow teachers to apply sunscreen to students; students must have a doctor's note to authorize they can apply it to themselves.
Voelpel explains, "Our policy follows the state law which allows district to establish the rules for how medications, both over-the-counter and prescription medication, is handled in the school. Our policy is that any of that medication requires a doctor's order for kids to take it at school. This is really to protect other students who could be exposed to various medications that they could be allergic to."
With the FDA recommending that sunscreen be reapplid every two hours, you can see how this could be an issue.
Michener would like a more "parent-friendly" policy when it comes to sunscreen, with the option of signing a waiver that allows teachers to apply it to students.
There was a similar scenario at my son's school last year, when his fifth grade class visited a pool for the day to celebrate the year-end. One of his friends suffered a severe burn that required a visit to the doctor's office and the parents were told the same thing about school policy.
The teachers were not allowed to apply sunscreen, so many children had burns by day's end. Those kids who brought sunscreen were not reminded to re-apply it throughout the day either, but, following parent complaints, a "sunscreen reminder" policy was put in place when the class visited an amusement park the following week.
What do you think of school policies about sunscreen?