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Enforce anti-homophobia policies and activities in schools through Ofsted.

Comment 20th July 2010

All schools, including faith schools and independent schools should be forced through Ofsted to have policies in place for dealing with homophobic bullying, including positive action such as activities to celebrate Gay History Month with a prominence equal to that given to Black History Month. Gay teachers should be encouraged to be out and to provide role models. There should be identified teachers for students to come to with issues and relationships should be established with local gay youth groups. Sex education should cover same sex relationships and explain how to pratice safer sex.

Why does this matter?

Homophobia in schools is very damaging and results in poor outcomes for students victimised because of their sexuality or perceived sexuality. The incidence or self harm and suicide among bullied gay and lesbian students is far higher than among their heterosexual counterparts. Lack of safer sex education about same sex relationships has led to young people needlessly contracting HIV. We need to protect all our children and young people, including those who are gay or lesbian or perceived to be so.

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