According to the Gay, Lesbian, Straight Education Network’s 2015 National Safe Schools Survey, 57.6% of LGBTQ students felt unsafe at school because of their sexual orientation, while 43.3% felt unsafe because of their gender expression. Additionally, 98.1% of LGBTQ students heard “gay” used in a negative way (e.g., “that’s so gay”) at school. 67.4% heard this language frequently or often at school, and 93.4% reported that they felt distressed because of this language.

Educators are uniquely positioned to address these issues and work towards creating a safe, supportive and affirming school environment for LGBTQ students. Every student deserves the right to attend a school that fully embraces them for who they are and allows them to achieve their full potential. Educators are a powerful force in creating an LGBTQ-affirming school.

However, it is equally essential that LGBTQ educators are safe and supported in their schools and communities. Recent attacks on civil rights laws protecting LGBTQ workers from discrimination in the workplace not only undermines a safe working environment and positive school climate, but also fundamental human rights.

Every student and school employee deserves a safe, supportive, and affirming school environment. I, as a caring educator, pledge to create that space for LGBTQ students and staff.

  • I will talk to and share resources with my colleagues to educate them on the needs of LGBTQ students and educators.
  • I will advocate for safe, supportive learning environments for LGBTQ students and educators.
  • I will collaborate with my peers, parents, administration, community, and most importantly, my students and colleagues, to ensure everyone has access to LGBTQ-related supports and resources.
  • I will advocate for the rights of transgender students and educators and stand in opposition to all anti-LGBTQ legislation, policies, and practices.

Click here for more information on what is happening in your state and how you can take action.

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