Ma­jor­ity of LGBT pupils have been bul­lied at school

The Galloway News - - NEWS -

More than two-thirds of the re­gion’s LGBT pupils say they have been bul­lied at school be­cause of their sex­ual ori­en­ta­tion.

And more than three-quar­ters in­sist not enough is be­ing done to tackle the prob­lem at se­condary school level.

The shock­ing fig­ures were re­ported to the coun­cil’s chil­dren, young peo­ple and life­long learn­ing com­mit­tee on Tues­day.

The coun­cil’s young peo­ple cham­pion, Adam Wil­son, ad­mit­ted the statis­tics make “un­easy read­ing”.

Fol­low­ing a mo­tion to the coun­cil last year by Mr Wil­son, backed by Coun­cil­lor Ros Sur­tees, it was agreed to cre­ate a work­ing group of young peo­ple to con­sult on in­clu­sive ed­u­ca­tion in a bid to tackle is­sues faced by the les­bian, gay, bi­sex­ual and trans­gen­der (LGBT) com­mu­nity at schools.

This was re­lated to the Time for In­clu­sive Ed­u­ca­tion (TIE) cam­paign which aims to com­bat ho­mo­pho­bia, bi­pho­bia and trans­pho­bia.

The group, work­ing along­side LGBT Youth Scot­land, was in­volved in work­shops and oneto-one meet­ings with young peo­ple.

A re­port of their find­ings re­vealed that 68 per cent had been bul­lied at school on the ba­sis of be­ing LGBT, com­pared to a na­tional fig­ure of 71 per cent.

And 42 per cent said they would con­sider their school ex­pe­ri­ence as “bad”, with just over half reck­on­ing teach­ers were equipped to deal with LGBT is­sues. Sev­enty nine per cent said bul­ly­ing had long last­ing, neg­a­tive ef­fects.

But the study also re­vealed that 96 per cent felt safe at school.

Young peo­ple man­ager Mark Mol­loy said the re­port “high­lights some of the good work which is al­ready go­ing on within our re­gion” but added it shows there was “much more to do”.

A string of rec­om­men­da­tions were ac­cepted by coun­cil­lors in a bid to tackle the prob­lems.

They in­cluded record­ing spe­cific in­ci­dents of ho­mo­pho­bic, bi­pho­bic and trans­pho­bic bul­ly­ing in schools; all head teach­ers at­tend­ing LGBT aware­ness train­ing; and the idea that all schools should “cel­e­brate LGBT iden­ti­ties through at least one cul­tural cal­en­dar event each year”.

Coun­cil­lor Wil­son said: “The find­ings from lo­cal young LGBT peo­ple make for un­easy read­ing but our coun­cil is com­mit­ted to en­sur­ing that all young peo­ple in our re­gion have the best start in life.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.