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UNESCO HIV and Health Education Clearinghouse

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  1. How students’ perceptions of the school climate influence their choice to upstand, bystand, or Join perpetrators of bullying

    The authors of this article, Silvia Diazgranados Ferráns and Robert Selman, use an emergent framework to explore how the rules of the school culture at different perceived school climates affect early adolescents’ decisions to upstand, bystand, or join the perpetrators when they witness peer aggression and bullying. Through a grounded theory approach, they revisit interview data from twenty-three eighth graders in four middle schools, with the aim of building on previous research and refining their theoretical framework to guide future research on bullying. …

  2. The effect of negative school climate on academic outcomes for LGBT youth and the role of in-school supports

    For many lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) youth, intolerance and prejudice make school a hostile and dangerous place. This study examined simultaneously the effects of a negative school climate on achievement and the role that school-based supports—safe school policies, supportive school personnel, and gay–straight alliance (GSA) clubs—may have in offsetting these effects. Data were drawn from a survey of a diverse sample of 5,730 LGBT youths who had attended secondary schools in the United States. …

  3. Skool’s out

    The Skool's Out initiative was aimed at encouraging effective responses to homophobic harassment and violence in and around schools, both public and private, in New South Wales, Australia. The focus was on safety and security in the school environment for all students, teachers, parents and community members. It was held as part of the 2002 Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras and comprised three events: a public Forum, an entry in the Parade and a stall for the Mardi Gras Fair Day. A report and an information card were also produced. …

  4. Bullying of LGBT youth and school climate for LGBT educators

    Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) students continue to report more often than their heterosexual peers, through repeated studies (Kosciw, et al, 2010), a much higher incidence of experiencing bullying and harassment in schools. These students also reported a higher degree of isolation and few role models in schools. This paper discusses and relates results from a 2011 study during which teachers who self-identified as LGBT completed a survey to provide information on the workplace climate. …

  5. Youth empowerment and high school Gay-Straight Alliances

    In the field of positive youth development programs, “empowerment” is used interchangeably with youth activism, leadership, civic participation and self-efficacy. However, few studies have captured what empowerment means to young people in diverse contexts. This article explores how youth define and experience empowerment in youth-led organizations characterized by social justice goals: high school Gay-Straight Alliances (GSAs). …

  6. Going beyond gay-straight alliances to make schools safe for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students

    Currently, the establishment of Gay-Straight Alliances (GSA) in schools is one of the most visible and widely adopted strategies for calling attention to and addressing the needs of LGBT students. …

  7. Heterosexism in high school and victimization among lesbian, gay, bisexual and questioning students

    This study examined relationships between perceived heterosexism in high school policies and programs, social environments, and victimization rates among lesbian, gay, bisexual and questioning (LGBQ) students. Secondary analyses of Internet survey data from a large cohort of LGBQ students (N = 2037; 76% male, 82% White; mean age = 16.07; 56% gay or lesbian; 28% bisexual; 16% questioning) yielded moderate correlations between perceptions of non-discrimination and harassment policies, inclusive programs, and the prevalence and tolerance of anti-LGBQ harassment. …

  8. Effects of homophobic versus nonhomophobic victimization on school commitment and the moderating effect of teacher attitudes in Brazilian public schools

    This study investigated homophobic victimization, teacher support, and school commitment in Brazilian schools. Participants were 339 students, ages 11 to 18, in two public schools in Brazil. Data were obtained using the Brazil Preventing School Harassment Survey. Structural equation modeling revealed that both homophobic and nonhomophobic victimization were negatively related to school commitment but that homophobic victimization was a stronger predictor. Results supported the hypothesis that supportive teachers can moderate the relationship between victimization and school commitment. …

  9. Teach to reach: addressing lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender youth issues in the classroom

    This article explores the delicate and complex issues immediate to the lives of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) youth. The author places the discussion within the context of learning environments and presents ways in which pre-service and in-service teachers can help create safe and equitable spaces for all learners. Presented are various classroom strategies, activities, and resources for educators to tap into and utilize.

  10. Bullying of lesbian and gay youth: a qualitative investigation

    The preponderance of bullying research does not address sexual orientation as a possible factor. The purpose of this study was to explore the perspectives of service providers and youth advocates working with lesbian and gay communities in order to increase understanding of bullying of lesbian and gay youth. In depth, semi-structured interviews were conducted with nine key informants from various education and social service settings. Interviews were recorded and transcribed verbatim. Inductive data analysis was conducted using a constant comparative method. …

  11. Queer research and queer youth

    This articles provides commentaries on researching lesbian, gay and bisexual youth.

  12. Social policy report: safe schools policy for LGBTQ students

    Two proposed U.S. federal laws would provide explicit protection for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning (LGBTQ) students in public schools. These federal laws follow actions by many states and school districts to define and implement laws or policies to protect the safety of LGBTQ students in schools. Research during the past decade has shown that LGBTQ youth are a vulnerable population, and that the negative school experiences of LGBTQ students often contribute to their vulnerability. …

  13. Meeting the needs of LGBTQ youth: a "relational assets" approach

    Drawing primarily on three case studies, this article proposes a framework that those concerned about the welfare of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning (LGBTQ) youth can consider when developing, evaluating, or arguing for more effective programming: a relational assets approach. The relational assets approach merges the developmental assets framework outlined by adolescent development researchers and the voice-centered relational work of feminist psychologists. …

  14. 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. …

  15. 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.

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