To feel safe and to feel seen. To feel valued and capable of growth. These are simple concepts—basic pillars of student achievement and the results of good pedagogy.
For many queer students these rights remain out of reach. But LGBTQ students who go to school in a fully inclusive environment—where both curriculum and schoolwide policies value their identities—experience more positive outcomes. They also experience less harassment, feel more valued by school staff and face fewer barriers to success.
We also know that an LGBTQ-inclusive school benefits all students. Seeing LGBTQ identities valued in the classroom, in the curriculum and in day-to-day interactions inspires empathy, understanding and respect.
With this guide, we hope to help school leaders ensure that all students feel safe, seen and capable of success; to ensure that the curriculum is as complete and representative as possible; to ensure that the school climate fosters open and respectful dialogue among all students and staff; and to prepare youth to engage and thrive within our diverse democracy.