A year on from last year’s LGBTQ+ History Month and things couldn’t feel more different. The impact of Covid-19 and ongoing lockdown is affecting us all in various ways and, despite the difficult context we find ourselves in, it’s important that we’re still taking the time to think about diversity, equity and inclusion within our classrooms, schools and trusts.
There are growing concerns about the mental health and wellbeing of our LGBTQ+ young people as they navigate where they can find safe spaces in this situation, and how they can show up as their authentic selves.
The theme for this year’s LGBTQ+ History month is linked to PSHE and is about ‘Body, Mind, Spirit’. Here are 10 things you can do as a teacher, school leader or entire school community to get involved to help to raise awareness and increase understanding.
Take action by:
1. Exploring the latest resources for educators, classrooms and parents from Schools Out.
2. Downloading this handy resource pack from The Proud Trust, which includes materials for digital delivery.
3. Checking out this inspiring list of organisations who are working to ensure that people of all sexual orientations are treated fairly and feel like they belong in our schools.
4. Finding out more about the Diverse Educators partnership with the Carnegie School of Education, Leeds Beckett, home to the LGBTQ+ Centre for Inclusion in Education.
5. Reading and sharing this #DiverseEd blog about the lived experience of a LGBT teacher, Jared Cawley, to understand how to support the wellbeing of your colleagues.
6. Saving this interactive digital calendar from Dual Frequency featuring dates for all things diversity, equity and inclusion.
7. Reading these inspiring Role Model Stories from Diversity Role Models. The first season of Role Model Stories includes six episodes, with stories from Vicky Jane, Simeon, Mon, Barry, Richy, and Simon. The season is packed with inspiring personal stories covering a range of topics from history, intersectionality, LGBTQ+ inclusion in faith, gender identity, different families and more. Each video comes with a downloadable teacher resource.
8. Reading the Diversity Role Models’ ‘Pathways to LGBT+ Inclusion’ report which reveals that only 20% of secondary students learnt about LGBT+ identities and HBT bullying at school. The report also found that only 27% of secondary students said their school would be safe for a fellow student to come out as LGBTQ+.
10. Finding out how your LGBTQ+ staff feel about your workplace culture with Edurio’s free EDI survey.
Points of reflection:
- If we believe in a whole education to develop the whole child, how are we enabling our staff to bring their whole selves to school too?
- How can we be inclusive allies to support our pupils and students, staff and governors, and parents and carers, in feeling physically and psychologically safe in our schools?
- How can we take into account the current situation and continue to provide safe spaces for the LGBTQ+ young people in our care?