A majority of British people think primary schools should teach LGBTQ-inclusive lessons.
Amid protests and harmful debates around the topic of LGBTQ-inclusive education in UK schools, Stonewall have found that 60% of British people believe it’s right to teach kids about diverse families including those with same-sex parents.
Support is even higher among young people, as this figure increases to 68% for Brits aged 16-24.
Meanwhile, around one fifth (17%) of those surveyed said they disagreed or strongly disagreed with LGBTQ-inclusive teaching for primary school pupils.
“LGBT-inclusive education is life-changing teaching for so many young people, which is why it’s so powerful to see so much of the British public support the new legislation,” said Paul Twocock, Chief Executive at Stonewall.
“We owe it to the next generation to ensure our schools are a place where all children and young people can be themselves.
“It’s essential the Government invests more in training and resources to better prepare teachers and schools to deliver high-quality LGBT-inclusive teaching now and in the future.”
The new figures show how attitudes have changed since Stonewall was founded 30 years ago to fight against Section 28, a piece of legislation which banned conversations about same-sex relationships and the ‘promotion of homosexuality’ in schools.
While Section 28 was repealed in 2003, its negative effects still live on to this day. Two in five (40%) LGBTQ pupils are never taught anything about LGBTQ issues, and almost half (45%) are bullied for being LGBTQ.
Stonewall hopes this will start to change from September 2020, when secondary schools across England will be required to teach about sexual orientation and gender identity, and primary schools will teach about different types of families including LGBTQ families.
As part of their 30th anniversary celebrations, the charity are asking people to ‘come out’ for LGBTQ education and write to their local authorities in support of the new Relationships and Sex Education regulations.
“When I was at school there was hardly any mention of LGBT people or our history. It was like we didn’t exist,” said Years And Years frontman Olly Alexander.
“I had an inkling I was gay from a young age and felt extremely afraid of what that would mean for me. LGBT-inclusive education would have made a huge difference in my life. All schools need LGBT-inclusive education, it can and will save lives.
“Every young person deserves an education that shows them it’s OK to just be themselves and that no matter someone’s sexuality or gender identity they deserve respect.”
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Author: Daniel Megarry