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MSPs back call for LGBT education in all Scots schools

This news post is almost 7 years old

​Campaign gathers support from cross-party group of MSPs

MSPs are set to join campaigners today to support calls for LGBT issues to be taught in all schools in an effort to tackle homophobic bullying.

Party leaders Kezia Dugdale and Patrick Harvie will join MSPs of all parties alongside founders and supporters of the Time for Inclusive Education (TIE) group outside parliament today (Wednesday) to mark the second anniversary of the campaign.

Kezia Dugdale said: “It has been a privilege to be involved with the TIE campaign and to work alongside everyone to fight for LGBTI-inclusive education in our schools to help work towards ending homophobia, biphobia and transphobia.

“TIE has campaigned relentlessly to improve LGBTI equality in our schools, but today sadly too many young people face bullying and abuse.

"We can end this. We can work together to develop an education system that supports LGBTI people. We can deliver a better education experience for everyone."

Among the campaign's proposals are calls for LGBT issues, such as same-sex families and the history of the LGBT rights movement, to be included in curricular guidance and for teachers to be trained on how to address the topic in the classroom.

Recent research from TIE highlighted that nine out of ten LGBT pupils reported experiencing homophobia at school, while 42 per cent had attempted suicide as a result of being bullied because of their sexual orientation or gender identity.

Bruce Adamson, Children and Young People's Commissioner for Scotland, called on the Scottish Government to ensure that the proposals are taken forward.

He said: "TIE has achieved a lot in the last two years, but much more needs to be done. Children’s rights to identity and non-discrimination demand that education is LGBTI inclusive.

"The Scottish Government and education providers must live up to the promises they have made under international human rights law.”

In February, the Scottish Parliament became the first in Europe to support LGBT inclusive education after a majority of MSPs signed TIE's campaign pledge.

Following this, the Scottish Government launched a joint working-group with TIE and other stakeholders, which has been tasked with proposing policy recommendations to ministers.

Party leaders Patrick Harvie, Kezia Dugdale and Willie Rennie are among the sixty six MSPs who have signed the group's pledge.