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UNESCO HIV and Health Education Clearinghouse

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  1. 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. …

  2. The 2011 National School Climate Survey: the experiences of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth in our nation’s schools

    In this 2011 survey, the authors examine the experiences of LGBT students with regard to indicators of negative school climate: hearing biased remarks, including homophobic remarks, in school; feeling unsafe in school because of personal characteristics, such as sexual orientation, gender expression, or race/ethnicity; missing classes or days of school because of safety reasons; and experiencing harassment and assault in school. …

  3. 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. …

  4. 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. …

  5. School culture and the well-being of same-sex attracted youth

    This study assesses how variations in heteronormative culture in high schools affect the well-being of same-sex-attracted youth. The authors focus on the stigmatization of same-sex attraction (rather than identity or behavior) to better understand how heteronormativity may marginalize a wide range of youth. …

  6. School reform efforts for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered students

    Recent efforts of school personnel across the country to implement a variety of initiatives aimed at providing safe and tolerant learning environments for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered (LGBT) students have resulted in inclusion of homosexual identities in school curricula, identification of positive role models, counseling programs, and support groups. However, antigay attitudes and actions of students and teachers continue to persist. …

  7. Embracing gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered youth in school-based settings

    Youth with invisible challenges constitute a special area of concern for child and youth care workers. Youth struggling with gender and sexual orientation are reported to comprise ten percent of our youth population yet they may often be unknown to teachers and other school personnel. These adolescents face unique challenges in developing their identity and gaining social acceptance. This paper explores the challenges faced by these youth, the consequences of underserving this population and proposes some strategies for improving their educational experience.

  8. Gay, lesbian, and bisexual youths' perception of their high school environments and comfort in school

    This study investigated gay, lesbian, and bisexual adolescents' perceptions of their school environment, their experiences with victimization and professional support in school, and individual, peer, and family factors associated with their perceptions of and comfort in their school environments. Data were gathered from 136 self-identified gay, lesbian, and bisexual high school students in northern New England. …

  9. Negotiating a research protocol for studying school-based gay and lesbian issues

    The nature of public schooling, particularly at the early and middle childhood levels, makes designing critical qualitative studies around gay and lesbian issues in the school context problematic at best. This article provides a retrospective dialogue between an associate professor and her then Ph.D. candidate advisee that reflects on the tension created as they negotiated through the pitfalls and problems inherent in developing a workable proposal for a gay/lesbian school-based study. …

  10. Towards a model for research on the effects of school organizational health factors on primary school performance in Trinidad and Tobago

    This article presents a model for research on the effects of school organizational heath factors on primary school academic achievement in Trinidad and Tobago. The model can be applicable for evaluating schools in other developing countries. As proposed, the model hypothesizes relationships between external factors (exogenous variables), school-level factors (endogenous variables), and school outcomes (student achievement and positive school climate). The endogenous variables are sub-scales of school organizational health. …

  11. 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. …

  12. 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.

  13. 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. …

  14. Playgrounds and prejudice: elementary school climate in the United States. A survey of students and teachers

    Students’ school education consists of not only what they are explicitly taught in the classroom, but also what they implicitly learn through the language, attitudes and actions of other students and teachers. When these attitudes, remarks and actions are unsupportive or hostile, they create a school climate that can negatively impact students’ feelings of safety and their interest in school and learning. Understanding school climate is an important first step in ensuring that all students feel safe and supported in their learning environments. …

  15. High school gay-straight alliances (GSAs) and young adult well-being: an examination of GSA presence, participation, and perceived effectiveness

    Gay-Straight Alliances (GSAs) are student-led, school-based clubs that aim to provide a safe environment in the school context for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) students, as well as their straight allies. The present study examines the potential for GSAs to support positive youth development and to reduce associations among LGBT-specific school victimization and negative young adult well-being. …

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