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Supporting LGBT youth   in our community:Words and actions matter      February 16, 2012       Amy L. Reynolds      Univer...
Agenda  Introductions/Goals  Take a Stand Activity  The Reality of Anti-LGBT Attitudes &Bullying  Sharing Strategies for C...
GoalsHighlight the realities of anti-LGBT bullyingShare strategies for combatting anti-LGBTattitudes and bullyingExplore n...
TerminologyLGBTQBullying is often more about genderexpression than sexual orientationActual sexual orientation is less imp...
Take a StandTalking about LGBT issues in the schools is risky inour district because of how some parents mightreactThe bes...
Just One Story:       Joel Burnshttp://www.itgetsbetter.org/#ax96cghOnY4
Addressing Anti-LGBTBullying in the Schools Controversial Regardless of our values and beliefs, we can all agree that EVER...
The RealityYoung people are coming out at younger ages(in past 30 years from 19 to 16 years old;sometimes in middle school...
The RealityFor last 10 years, GLSEN has collected dataon experiences of LGBT youthNationwide schools are hostile environme...
Just the facts88.9% of students hear “gay” used in anegative way (“that’s so gay”) frequently86.5% report feeling distress...
This high incidence of harassment and assaultis exacerbated by school staff rarely, if everintervening62% of those student...
Academic consequences of  not feeling/being safe  29% of students skipped class at least once in  past month  30% missed a...
Personal consequences of  not feeling/being safe Victimization leads to higher levels of depression, anxiety, and lower le...
Overall EffectsLGBTQ youth suffer emotionally, socially, andacademicallyUnlike other youth targeted by bullies, theycannot...
External Influences on       School Climate•   Government legislation•   Community values and attitudes
Anoka-Hennepin           School District•   MINNEAPOLIS — The board of Minnesotas largest school district    prepared to v...
Matt’s Safe School Law•   Michigan law, SB 137 or Matt’s Safe School Law, was named in memory    of Matt Epling, who commi...
School climateNorms, values and expectationsthat support students feelingsocially, emotionally, andphysically safe.
School ClimateUltimately school climate affects how LGBTstudents feel about being at schoolA “null” environment is never e...
What research saysmakes a differenceHaving a comprehensive, effective, andenforced bullying/harassment policy thatexplicit...
What Schools Can Do Support national programming (e.g., No Name Calling Week, Day of Silence, National Coming Out Day) For...
“That’s so gay”http://www.thinkb4youspeak.com/videos.asp?play=tvspots&video=TV_Cashiers_30
GSAs: Why they matter  Presence in school sends a message that  hate speech and bullying will not be  tolerated; moving be...
Using a competency      approachNecessary competencies will vary forstudents, teachers, and administratorsMany students wa...
Necessary    Competencies   Responding to Bullying Incidents       Be Aware       Intervene (Stop the behavior)       ...
Necessary    Competencies   Responding to LGBT students       Be Aware       Demonstrate openness       Initiate and a...
Barriers to SuccessBrainstorm barriers and how todeal with them
Questions/Answers
It Gets Betterhttp://www.itgetsbetter.org/video/entry/4vutaav5s3k/
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Alberti Center for Bullying Abuse Prevention Colloquium Series - February 2012

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"Supporting LGBT Youth in Our Community: Words and Actions Matter"

Presented by Amy L. Reynolds, Ph.D., Associate Professor in the Department of Counseling, School, and Educational Psychology at the University at Buffalo

February 16, 2012

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  • Bullying can have catastrophic consequences for all involved.If your child reports being bulied, write down her story.These can help you prove that a pattern of bullying is occurring, and it will let school officials know that you take the problem seriously.As a way of helping everyone especially the parents, who find it quite hard to manage time, I found this great Safety Service which featured a safety app which gets me connected to a Safety Network or escalate my call to the nearest 911 when needed, it has other cool features that are helpful for your kids with just a press of a Panic Button. #SafekidZone, Check it here: http://bit.ly/ZjYchC
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Transcript of "Alberti Center for Bullying Abuse Prevention Colloquium Series - February 2012"

  1. 1. Supporting LGBT youth in our community:Words and actions matter February 16, 2012 Amy L. Reynolds University at Buffalo
  2. 2. Agenda Introductions/Goals Take a Stand Activity The Reality of Anti-LGBT Attitudes &Bullying Sharing Strategies for Combatting Anti- LGBT Attitudes & Bullying Addressing competencies Next Steps
  3. 3. GoalsHighlight the realities of anti-LGBT bullyingShare strategies for combatting anti-LGBTattitudes and bullyingExplore necessary competenciesDiscuss next steps to ensure safe schools forALL students
  4. 4. TerminologyLGBTQBullying is often more about genderexpression than sexual orientationActual sexual orientation is less important thanwhat others suspect or assume
  5. 5. Take a StandTalking about LGBT issues in the schools is risky inour district because of how some parents mightreactThe best way for LGBT youth to survive in school isto not come out beyond telling their closest friends
  6. 6. Just One Story: Joel Burnshttp://www.itgetsbetter.org/#ax96cghOnY4
  7. 7. Addressing Anti-LGBTBullying in the Schools Controversial Regardless of our values and beliefs, we can all agree that EVERY student deserves a safe and affirming school environment
  8. 8. The RealityYoung people are coming out at younger ages(in past 30 years from 19 to 16 years old;sometimes in middle school)Living with bullying is a DAILY reality for LGBTstudentsChildren and teens are targeted not becausethey are out as LGBT but because they aredifferent
  9. 9. The RealityFor last 10 years, GLSEN has collected dataon experiences of LGBT youthNationwide schools are hostile environmentsfor many LGBTQ studentsMany LGBTQ youth hear homophobicremarks and face verbal/physical harassmentand assault because of their sexual orientationor gender expression
  10. 10. Just the facts88.9% of students hear “gay” used in anegative way (“that’s so gay”) frequently86.5% report feeling distressed72.4% heard other homophobic remarks(e.g., fag, queer, dyke)62.6% heard negative remarks about genderexpression (not acting masculine or feminineenough)
  11. 11. This high incidence of harassment and assaultis exacerbated by school staff rarely, if everintervening62% of those students believe little or noaction will be taken or the situation will bemade worse34% of those students who did report anincident said that school staff did nothing
  12. 12. Academic consequences of not feeling/being safe 29% of students skipped class at least once in past month 30% missed at least one entire day of school in past month 3X more likely to missed school if they were victimized GPAs almost half a grade lower and more likely to have lower educational aspirations
  13. 13. Personal consequences of not feeling/being safe Victimization leads to higher levels of depression, anxiety, and lower levels of self- esteem 2-6X more likely to attempt suicide and may account for as many as 30% of youth suicides
  14. 14. Overall EffectsLGBTQ youth suffer emotionally, socially, andacademicallyUnlike other youth targeted by bullies, theycannot often ask for help at home for fear ofrejectionThese effects can be life altering
  15. 15. External Influences on School Climate• Government legislation• Community values and attitudes
  16. 16. Anoka-Hennepin School District• MINNEAPOLIS — The board of Minnesotas largest school district prepared to vote Monday night on a replacement for a policy that requires teachers to stay neutral when sexual orientation comes up in class, a stance that has been blamed for fostering bullying.• Critics say the neutrality policy keeps teachers from preventing bullying of students who are gay or perceived as gay. It has the support of some parents who believe homosexual conduct is immoral and dont want their children taught otherwise.• The policy has been under fire since six students in the district committed suicide in less than two years. A parent of one of the students who committed suicide says her son was bullied for being gay. Gay advocacy groups say some of the others students who killed themselves were also bullied.
  17. 17. Matt’s Safe School Law• Michigan law, SB 137 or Matt’s Safe School Law, was named in memory of Matt Epling, who committed suicide in the wake of relentless bullying, was passed 26-11 into law in November 2011. While intended to combat bullying, the law offered a loophole to those who bully LGBT students. All they need to do, according to the legislation, which received no democratic votes, is claim that their bullying was based on “a sincerely held religious belief or moral conviction.”• The exact language inserted:• This section does not abridge the rights under the first amendment of the constitution of the united states or under article i of the state constitution of 1963 of a school employee, school volunteer, pupil, or a pupil’s parent or guardian. This section does not prohibit a statement of a sincerely held religious belief or moral conviction of a school employee, school volunteer, pupil, or a pupil’s parent or guardian.
  18. 18. School climateNorms, values and expectationsthat support students feelingsocially, emotionally, andphysically safe.
  19. 19. School ClimateUltimately school climate affects how LGBTstudents feel about being at schoolA “null” environment is never enoughAn affirming and safe school climate forLGBT youth is one where they areproactively told that they matter and wherevisible allies exist
  20. 20. What research saysmakes a differenceHaving a comprehensive, effective, andenforced bullying/harassment policy thatexplicitly addresses bias-based bullyingCreating an inclusive curriculumTraining teachers and school personnel tointervene thus creating a presence ofsupportive educatorsSupporting Gay-Straight Alliances and othervisible programmatic efforts
  21. 21. What Schools Can Do Support national programming (e.g., No Name Calling Week, Day of Silence, National Coming Out Day) Form a Gay Straight Alliance Expose students to positive messages about LGBT individuals
  22. 22. “That’s so gay”http://www.thinkb4youspeak.com/videos.asp?play=tvspots&video=TV_Cashiers_30
  23. 23. GSAs: Why they matter Presence in school sends a message that hate speech and bullying will not be tolerated; moving beyond the null environment Schools with GSAs have less verbal harassment and in-school victimization; LGBT youth are less likely to miss school and more likely to report feelings of belonging Provide LGBT students with contact with supportive adults in the school
  24. 24. Using a competency approachNecessary competencies will vary forstudents, teachers, and administratorsMany students want to intervene but don’tknow howCreate opportunities for students to learn skills(e.g., role plays, Use Another Word)Show videos/movies that offer alternativeperspective and provide examples of how torespond
  25. 25. Necessary Competencies Responding to Bullying Incidents  Be Aware  Intervene (Stop the behavior)  Show Empathy  Educate  Report
  26. 26. Necessary Competencies Responding to LGBT students  Be Aware  Demonstrate openness  Initiate and anticipate  Be LGBT affirmative
  27. 27. Barriers to SuccessBrainstorm barriers and how todeal with them
  28. 28. Questions/Answers
  29. 29. It Gets Betterhttp://www.itgetsbetter.org/video/entry/4vutaav5s3k/
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