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LGBTQ 101 How to support students, parents and co- workers.

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Presentation on theme: "LGBTQ 101 How to support students, parents and co- workers."— Presentation transcript:

1 LGBTQ 101 How to support students, parents and co- workers

2 TERMINOLOGY What in the world are all those letters for??

3 Definitions: LGBTQ: Abbreviation for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer. Also seen as GLBTQ and is inclusive of all backgrounds Lesbian: A term given to females who are attracted sexually and emotionally to some other females. Gay: A term typically given to males who are attracted sexually and emotionally to some other males. The term Gay might apply to both males and females depending on context or even the conversation Bisexual: A term given to people who are attracted sexually and emotionally to some males and some females.

4 Transgender: A umbrella term describing the state of a person’s gender identity which does not necessarily match the gender they were assigned at birth. Other words commonly used are female-to-male (FTM), male-to-female (MTF), cross-dresser, drag queen and king, and genderqueer. Transgender people may or may not decide to alter their bodies hormonally and/or surgically. Note: Being transgender does not imply any specific sexual orientation.

5 Queer: Term used to refer to LGB and often T people. Some use queer as an alternative to gay to be more inclusive, as it does not convey a sense of gender. Has had derogatory meaning in the past; recently been reclaimed by many (especially youth) as a positive term

6 Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Sexual Orientation: preferred term used when referring to an individual's physical and/or emotional attraction to the same and/or opposite gender. "Heterosexual," "bisexual" and "homosexual" are all sexual orientations. Gender Identity: refers to all of the external characteristics and behaviors that are socially defined as either masculine or feminine, such as dress, grooming, mannerisms, speech patterns and social interactions. Everyone has a sexual orientation AND a gender identity

7 Sexual Orientation Sexual Orientation: Romantic & Sexual Attractions Sexual Behavior: Sexual Experiences straight bisexual gay/lesbian opposite sex both sexes same sex

8 Gender Identity Biological Sex: Assigned at Birth Gender Identity: person’s sense of self male intersex female man genderqueer woman Gender Expression: what is portrayed outwardly masculine androgynous feminine

9 People identify in a variety of ways: Biological Sex Male Female Intersex Gender Identity Man Woman Androgynous Gender Queer Gender Expression Masculine Feminine Androgynous Biological Sex Male Female Intersex Gender Identity Man Woman Androgynous Gender Queer Gender Expression Masculine Feminine Androgynous


11 Startling statistics about LGBTQ students: 72% of students hear homophobic remarks (faggot, dyke) frequently or often at school. 42% of students felt unsafe at school because of their gender expression. 61% of students felt unsafe at school because of their sexual orientation. Sadly, homophobia and heterosexism are still very much present in many of our schools and communities. Creating inclusive curriculum and establishing accepting classroom and school climates improves the educational experience for all students, families and teachers.

12 Transgendered students: 55% of transgendered youth report being physically abused based on their gender identity or expression. 74% of transgendered youth report being verbally harassed based on their gender identity or expression. More than 50% of transgender students attempt suicide.

13 In our own backyard: In 2013: A 6-year-old transgendered student in Fountain, CO was at the center of a civil-rights controversy. Coy was born a boy but lives life as a girl. From Eagleside Elementary School, “Coy was born a male and at least some of the parents and students are likely to become uncomfortable with his continued use of the girls' restroom.” The decision marks the first ruling in the nation holding that transgender students must be allowed to use bathrooms that match the gender with which they identify, and the most comprehensive ruling ever supporting the rights of transgender people to access bathrooms without harassment or discrimination.

14 Statistics about LGBTQ co-workers: The majority of LGBTQ workers (51%) hide their identities to most of their coworkers. 58% of LGBTQ workers say someone at work makes a joke or derogatory comment about LGBT people at least once in a while. For many LGBTQ individuals, the work environment is fraught with anxiety. Derogatory comments go unchecked, exclusive language is used in workplace communications and energy that could be spent on working and creating healthy relationships with coworkers is instead spent on maintaining barriers, avoiding social events and learning how to answer questions about their home lives evasively.

15 Laws in Colorado: SB : Colorado Anti-Discrimination Act In May 2008, Colorado expanded its anti-discrimination law to include protections based on sexual orientation and gender identity. This law protects LGBTQ students and adults from harassment and discrimination in schools across Colorado. HB : Anti-Bullying Legislation In May 2011, Colorado became the 13 th state to pass an anti-bullying law that includes race, religion, disability, sex, sexual orientation and gender identity.


17 When talking with a first-grader? When talking with a fifth-grader? “What does ‘gay’ mean?” You overhear a student say, “That’s gay.” Can two boys or two girls get married? You overhear a child say, “Gay people are bad.”

18 ABOUT FAMILIES WITH GAY OR LESBIAN PARENTS How can she have two moms? Which one is the real one? She has two dads? How is that possible? Don’t you need a man and a woman to have a baby? My grandma says it’s wrong for two men to get married.

19 QUESTIONS OR STATEMENTS FROM PARENTS/GUARDIANS OR COLLEAGUES Aren’t the students too young to talk about gay topics? (from a colleague or parent/guardian) I don’t want my child to think that being gay is an OK option for them. My religion teaches that it is wrong to be gay. Aren’t all male elementary teachers gay? (I don’t want a male kindergarten teacher as they might be gay.)


21 Curriculum must be LGBTQ inclusive starting in elementary school for the following reasons: All students should feel that they and their family are included in their school community The relationship of young children to their family is central to understanding “who they are” Students learn more effectively when they see themselves reflected in the curriculum

22 Students’ perception of school/teacher support is directly tied to their academic performance Pressure to conform to gender roles can limit social and academic development Name-calling and bullying have a negative impact on academic outcomes

23 How to make an inclusive classroom: Use inclusive language Use precise terms like Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, and Questioning (LGBTQ). Use terms like partner instead of boyfriend and girlfriend or husband and wife. Or grownup instead of mom and dad. Never tolerate abusive language in your classroom or in the halls Language like, “That’s so gay” or “You’re such a fag” is common in schools, and it actively creates an unsafe environment for LGBTQ students and LGBTQ Allies. Don’t simply be punitive with hurtful language. Instead, explain why it is not welcome and is hurtful. This helps students understand why they shouldn’t use the language rather than just making them avoid using it around you.

24 Have books and other material that includes ALL types of families. See resource list on intern website. Recognize that you’re not an expert. You will make mistakes and occasionally be insensitive. Humble yourself and apologize where necessary; learn from your mistakes, and always try to broaden your understanding of LGBTQ issues so you can best support all of your students. What else can you do???

25 RESOURCES There is SOOO much out there!

26 One Colorado I have posted a ton of information on the intern website. PLEASE feel free to contact me for more!!

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