Scottish parents overwhelmingly support LGBTQ+ inclusive education, vital new survey finds

Students doing a presentation about LGBTQI rights at school

The majority of parents and carers overwhelmingly support LGBTQ+ inclusive education being taught in Scottish schools, a survey has found. 

Research conducted by Survation, on behalf of Time for Inclusive Education (TIE), has revealed overwhelming support in Scotland for the teaching of LGBTQ+ topics in class.

In 2019, Scotland become the first country in the world to teach LGBTQ+ inclusive issues in school lessons, following its government accepting all 33 recommendations included in a report by the LGBTQ+ Inclusive Education working group in 2018. 

The survey, which spoke to more than 1,000 parents and carers of school aged children, found 73 per cent rated their awareness of LGBTQ+ education as “very aware” or “quite aware”, with only 26 per cent being “not that” or “not at all” aware. 

Participants then watched a video about LGBTQ+ inclusive education with an impressive 92 per cent voting that they understood “very well” and a “fair amount” about such education following the video. 

The majority of parents (76 per cent) also agreed that children should learn about LGBTQ+-related bullying and prejudice at school, with 67 per cent agreeing that such education would help address LGBTQ+-related bullying in schools, and 24 per cent voting that it won’t help. 

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A majority of 66 per cent said school students should learn about historic LGBTQ+ figures, and when asked to what extend they support or oppose LGBTQ+ education being taught in schools 70 per cent responded that they “strongly” or “somewhat” supported it.

Only 15 per cent of respondents voted that they “strong” or “somewhat” oppose LGBTQ+-inclusive education, while 14 per voted that they  neither support or oppose it. 

Leanne McGuire, Glasgow representative on behalf of the National Parent Forum of Scotland, said the survey, “despite potential misconceptions fuelled by internet and social media misinformation” has underscored “the actual strong backing for incorporating LGBTQ+ Inclusive Education into the school curriculum”. 

Nicola Fisher, the Educational Institute of Scotland’s equality committee convener, said: “As LGBTQ+ Inclusive Education is now a requirement for all Scottish schools, these findings should be a strong signal to education authorities to meaningfully engage with the national approach, and give teachers the proper time, support and resources so that they can confidently deliver an LGBTQ+ inclusive curriculum for the benefit, not only of young people who identify as LGBTQ+, but of all learners.”