As a result of these factors, LGBT students are more likely than heterosexual peers to suffer abuse.
He added that school administrators dismissed his complaints of verbal and physical abuse, blaming him for being “so open about it.”In some instances, teachers themselves mocked LGBT youth or joined the bullying.
Lynette G., the mother of a young girl with a gay father in South Dakota, recalled that when her daughter was eight, “she ran home because they were teasing her.
Such restrictions make it difficult or impossible for LGBT youth to get information about health and well-being on the same terms as heterosexual peers.
The effects of these laws are not only limited to health or sexuality education classes.
In some districts, this silence was exacerbated by state law.
In Alabama, Texas, Utah, and five other US states, antiquated states laws restrict discussions of homosexuality in schools.
Over the last 15 years, lawmakers and school administrators have increasingly recognized that LGBT youth are a vulnerable population in school settings, and many have implemented policies designed to ensure all students feel safe and welcome at school. In many states and school districts, LGBT students and teachers lack protections from discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.
In others, protections that do exist are inadequate or unenforced.
bullying and harassment, exclusion from school curricula and resources, restrictions on LGBT student groups, and other forms of discrimination and bigotry against students and staff based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
While not exhaustive, these broad issues offer a starting point for policymakers and administrators to ensure that LGBT people’s rights are respected and protected in schools.
As transgender and gender non-conforming students have become more visible, too, many states and school districts have ignored their needs and failed to ensure they enjoy the same academic and extracurricular benefits as their non-transgender peers.