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UNESCO HIV and Health Education Clearinghouse

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  1. Supporting sexual diversity in schools: a guide

    Homophobic bullying and assumptions of heterosexuality mean that many same sex attracted or gender questioning (SSAGQ) students feel frightened or less confident to attend school and/or feel unable to get support because it will mean they have to come out. This means that SSAGQ students experience interrupted access to the full range of school programs and activities, at times resulting in an inability to complete their studies or perform to their academic potential. …

  2. This was my hell: the violence experienced by gender non-conforming youth in US high schools

    This paper explores the experiences of harassment and violence endured by seven gender nonconforming youth in US high schools. Based on a larger research project, it opens an inquiry into the school-based lives of gender-variant teens, a group heretofore ignored by most academics and educators. Breaking violence down into two main types (physical and sexual), this work uses informants' voices, along with 'doing gender' theory, to analyze the experiences of butch lesbian girls, trans teenagers, and genderqueer youth. …

  3. An exploratory survey of the experiences of homophobic bullying among lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered young people in Ireland

    While developments have been made concerning the understanding of general bullying behaviour in Irish schools, considerably less is known about homophobic bullying. Presented here are the findings of a study into the views and perspectives of a self-selected sample of 123 lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgendered (LGBT) secondary school-aged young people in Ireland. Findings highlight the extent to which such students experience name calling, teasing and bullying in their everyday lives. …

  4. Suicidal ideation among Canadian youth: a multivariate analysis

    A multivariate model was developed incorporating various socio-demographic, social-environmental, and social-psychological factors in an attempt to predict suicidal ideation among Canadian youth. The main research objective sought to determine what socially based factors elevate or reduce suicidal ideation within this population. Using data from the National Longitudinal Study of Children and Youth - Cycle 5 (2003), a cross-sectional sample of 1,032 was used to empirically identify various social determinants of suicidal ideation among youth between the ages of 12 and 15. …

  5. Safety in our schools: strategies for responding to homophobia

    Australian research about young people has found that schools can be very unsafe for students who are, or perceived to be, gay, lesbian, or bisexual. Research has also found that many teachers are reluctant to address issues to do with homosexuality, especially in relation to students. Like the rest of the community, school staff have a range of beliefs and concerns about homosexuality. Unlike the rest of the community, teachers work with many young people from diverse backgrounds representing different values, religious beliefs, and family expectations. …

  6. School safety and violence prevention for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students: a question and answer guide for California school officials and administrators

    This document provides guidance for the following questions: What are school districts' legal responsibilities under state and federal anti-discrimination laws? What are some examples of discrimination and harassment based on sexual orientation or gender identity? Why are these laws necessary? How to we make sure we comply with these laws? What steps does a school district need to take to ensure it has an effective anti-harassment policy? Is it necessary to include enumerated categories in the anti-harassment policy? …

  7. Who, what, where, when, and why: demographic and ecological factors contributing to hostile school climate for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender youth

    This study examines how locational (region and local), community-level (school district poverty and adult educational attainment), and school district-level (district size and ratios of students to key school personnel) variables are related to indicators of hostile school climate for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) youth. Indicators of hostile climate included frequency of homophobic remarks and victimization regarding sexual orientation and gender expression. …

  8. Cost of homophobia: literature review of the economic impact of homophobia on Canada

    Research was reviewed related to the negative results of homophobia on gays, lesbians and bisexuals (GLB), and the economic impact of such negative effects. Homophobia was defined as the irrational fear of, or aversion to, homosexuals and homosexuality, while the related construct of heterosexism was defined as a belief system that values heterosexuality as superior to and/or more natural than homosexuality, and/or the assumption that all people are heterosexual. …

  9. Same sex attraction, homophobic bullying and mental health of young people in Northern Ireland

    This article reports on the relationship between same-sex attraction, experience of bullying in school and mental health measured using the 12-item version of the General Health Questionnaire (GHQ12). A random sample of 16 year olds, drawn from the Child Benefit Register, was invited to take part in the 2005 Young Life and Times survey, which is a postal survey carried out in Northern Ireland every year. Eight hundred and nineteen 16 year olds responded, which represented a return rate of 40%. …

  10. British Columbia

    Most school districts in British Columbia have failed to address homophobic bullying through programs and policies related to school safety. Two exceptions, namely the Victoria and Vancouver school districts, have adopted policies that specify homophobic bullying and education for students, staff, and administrators.

  11. Gender violence: transgender experiences with violence and discrimination

    There is a pervasive pattern of discrimination and prejudice against transgendered people within society. Both economic discrimination and experiencing violence could be the result of a larger social climate that severely sanctions people for not conforming to society's norms concerning gender; as such, both would be strongly associated with each other. Questionnaires were distributed to people either through events or through volunteers, and made available upon the World Wide Web. A sample of 402 cases was collected over the span of 12 months (April 1996 - April 1997). …

  12. Principal's perspective: school safety, bullying and harassment. A survey of public school principals

    The report from this study, The Principal's Perspective: School Safety, Bullying and Harassment, reveals a rich and complex picture of the attitudes of principals. Half of principals surveyed deem bullying, name-calling or harassment of students to be a serious problem at their school. Only one-third of secondary school principals say that a lesbian, gay or bisexual student would feel very safe at their school and only one-quarter say that a transgender student would feel very safe. …

  13. Conversations in equity and social justice: constructing safe schools for queer youth

    The paper is a critique of discourse focused on at-risk behaviour and homophobic bullying. The paper argues that conversations around homophobic bullying must include discussions of doing equity and achieving social justice, in which the ultimate goal of constructing safe schools is achieved through the utter transformation of school culture. Failure to do anything less continues to license homophobia and makes predictable and inevitable violence against queer youth. …

  14. Challenging homophobia together: research report

    This document reports on research carried out as part of a European project funded by the European Commission, DG - Justice. The 18-month project was undertaken by LGBT Youth Scotland, a Scottish LGBT organisation with experience of working within education, in partnership with Legebitra, an LGBT organisation in Slovenia, and aimed to increase the confidence of EU member states to develop strategies to combat homophobia within education settings. The project had four main components including a research stage, an education pilot in Slovenia, the development of a toolkit and youth involvement. …

  15. Challenging homophobia together: a guide to developing strategic partnerships in education

    This guide was developed as a result of research carried out during the lifetime of a European project funded by the European Commission, DG Justice. The 18-month project aimed to increase the confidence of EU member states to develop strategies to combat homophobia within education settings. The project was undertaken by LGBT Youth Scotland, who has experience of working in education, in partnership with Legebitra, an LGBT organisation in Slovenia. …

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