Why has it taken so long for schools to teach that gays aren’t freaks or criminals?
It is a rare SNP government initiative, particularly in education, that impresses me but I support their efforts to encourage LGBTI education in our schools (your report, 9 November).
In a different era I went through 12 years of school education which prepared me well for my seven years at university medical school, during all of which I gradually realised I was homosexual – “gay” was then still a word that held its original definition. I never experienced any personal antagonism or discrimination because I knew not to appear or behave differently but I was far from content with myself: it was implicit in everything I read, that we were told and taught and what I saw on television, that homosexuality was at best an illness and at worst criminal and sinful.
I could not be myself or be open about by feelings for many years, until well into my twenties.
Returning several times recently to my old school, Kirkcaldy High School, I was impressed and moved emotionally to find that they have a very active LGBTI support group, it has won awards from COSLA and in the foyer there is an amazing poster corner proclaiming this initiative.
That more schools will now have to include education on LGBTI issues must be welcome. But why has it taken 50 years since I left school?
Of course this will frustrate and annoy those with strong religious views, and I spent decades accepting those, but young people today who, for example, are gay have to know that they are not freaks or criminals and those who are not need to know and be told that about their fellow students, and that discrimination is abhorrent.
It is immaterial that Scotland will be “first in the world” to do this, politically driven grandstanding: what is important is that it happens and young people know how to accept themselves and others around them.
(DR) ALAN RODGER
Clairmont Gardens, Glasgow
We must congratulate Nicola Sturgeon and John Swinney for introducing LGBTI education into the Scottish curriculum... another great initiative to stand alongside the Named Person Scheme and P1 testing.
May I ask them when they will be addressing the standards in numeracy and literacy which have been falling over the past decade?
I’m sure we all remember Ms Sturgeon telling us that she should be judged on her record in Education. Is ten years enough time to form a reasoned judgement?
Winton Gardens, Edinburgh