Target: US Department of Education
Goal: Praise the US Department of Education for new plans to study bullying of LGBT students
New studies are being created to further understand the ways in which LGBT students are bullied and how bullying affects their school experiences. This is an important step forward in creating more accepting and inclusive school environments.
The National Center for Education Statistics will be completing the High School Longitudinal Study and the National Crime Victimization Survey’s School Crime Supplement. As part of these studies, new portions will be added with questions that pertain to gender identification and sexuality so as to evaluate the school experience of those who identify as a member of the LGBT community. The Department of Education (DOE) will also now include harassment due to sexuality in the Civil Rights Data Collection survey that will take place during the 2013-2014 school year.
The inclusion of sexuality in these studies was inspired not only by LGBT youth who spoke with the Secretary of Education about their experiences, but also by the high number of suicides that have taken place recently due to LGBT-related bullying. By taking a serious look at the ways that members of the LGBT community are harassed in school, the DOE is taking an official and important stand against bullying based on sexual orientation. LGBT youth are often targets of unfair treatment in school by both peers and faculty, which places the students at a disadvantage in terms of schoolwork and social interactions. With more attention called to bullying and mistreatment, steps can be taken to change the culture that exists within schools and make more welcoming environments for LGBT students.
Sign the below petition and praise the DOE for their dedication to LGBT students.
Dear US Department of Education,
The fair treatment and education of our youth is extremely important in the United States. LGBT students face bullying and hardship in schools due to their sexual orientation, and this puts them at a disadvantage within the school systems, often setting them up for failure.
I am writing you to praise your decision to study the targeted bullying of LGBT youth in our schools. Widening the studies to include sexual orientation is an important step both in demonstrating the government’s commitment to all students, regardless of sexual orientation, and also in actively creating a new, more inclusive, environment in the schools. Any progress made to support LGBT individuals and to stop bullying should be highly commended.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Troy Tolley via Flickr