Education minister to launch LGBT History Month

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Baroness Morgan will become the first education minister to attend the pre-launch of LGBT History Month.

Tomorrow’s event will take place at a school for the first time – Hackney Free Parochial School, and it is sponsored by the Department for Children, Schools and Families.

The theme of next February’s History Month will be Education and Young People, and organisers Schools Out hope the pre-launch will encourage schools, colleges and youth clubs to put on local events throughout the month.

There will be exhibitions that have been made specifically for LGBT History Month on show at tomorrow’s event and performances from young people, celebrating LGBT history, people and culture.

“Under the previous minister Kevin Brennan, the DCSF were finally starting to take LGBT issues seriously,” said Sue Sanders of Schools Out.

“We are delighted that Baroness Morgan has so quickly shown her willingness to embrace this crucial work.

“In previous years, we have seen some wonderful, innovative projects in individual schools, and we are keen to spread this good practice far and wide.

“Under the forthcoming Equalities Bill, schools are likely to be required to promote all six equality strands and we have some great resources to share with the education and youth work communities.”

In January the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families, Ed Balls, launched the first ever national guidance from the government to help schools tackle homophobic bullying.

A recent study by gay equality organisation Stonewall found that nearly two thirds of LGB students reported instances of homophobic harassment.

That figure jumps to 75% of young gay people attending faith schools.

The survey of more than 1,100 young people found that only 23% of all UK schools explicitly condemn homophobic bullying.

92% of gay, lesbian and bisexual pupils have experienced verbal abuse, 41% physical bullying and 17% have been subject to death threats.

30% of pupils reported that adults have been responsible for incidents of homophobic bullying in their schools.

Nearly every interviewed student had heard phrases like, ‘You’re so gay’, and remarks like ‘poof’ and ‘dyke’ in UK schools.

Click here for more information on LGBT History Month