The Impact of Socio-EconomicStatus on Acceptance of LGBTGifted Students in Urban/Suburban SchoolsNational Association for ...
Abstract             Studies of GLBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender) gifted             students face the diffic...
Rationale             Seminar: Presentations by Gay Students Teachers by Panel             High Income suburban - more har...
Homophobia in our Schools             80% of tomorrow’s teachers self-report negative attitudes             toward LGBT pe...
Research             Dr Gary Orfield (2005) — little diversity in most high-income             schools in spite of Brown v....
Ethnic Representation in Gifted       Classes (Nationally)               % of Student Population                  % of Gif...
Difficulties of Identifying Gifted      LGBT Students and Teachers             Self-identification - outed students         ...
1                            2                              3                                  4 Pre-Identity Confusion   ...
Characteristics and Challenges of      Gifted LGBT Students (Eriksson & Stewart 2005)        Gifted Students             L...
Characteristics and Challenges of      Gifted LGBT Students (Eriksson & Stewart 2005)        Gifted Students             L...
Qualitative Design                              Low SES             High SES                                              ...
Trends: General Gifted LGBT      Issues for Students             Harassment             Isolation             Lack of Supp...
Findings: General Gifted LGBT      Issues for Teachers                    Personal                                Curricul...
Findings: SES Gifted LGBT Issues      for Students                       LOW SES                               HIGH SES   ...
Findings: SES Gifted LGBT Issues      for Teachers             LGBT issue integration             Diversity in student col...
Recommendations for      Differentiated Counseling Services             Developmental vs Crisis Oriented Approach         ...
Model for Culturally Responsive      Counseling for Gifted LGBT        Gay, 2000, clarified “culturally responsive pedagogy...
Guidelines for Counselors of      Gifted LGBT Students      Van Wormer, Wells & Boes (2000)           Dismantle heterosexi...
References             Cohn, S. (2003). The gay gifted learner: Facing the challenge of homophobia and             antihom...
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The Impact of Socio-Economic Status on Acceptance of LGBT Gifted Students in Urban/Suburban Schools

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Studies of LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender) gifted students face the difficulty of identifying these at-risk students who are hidden, threatened, and oppressed in many schools. The fear of disclosure makes this group difficult to identify, but meeting their unique affective and curriculum needs is crucial. This qualitative study used case studies and interviews to obtain information about the experiences and attitudes to LGBT gifted students by both gifted and non-gifted students in two high schools: one urban, ethnically diverse, and low-income; and one suburban, macro-cultural, and affluent. Includes recommendations for differentiated counseling services for LGBT students.

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The Impact of Socio-Economic Status on Acceptance of LGBT Gifted Students in Urban/Suburban Schools

  1. 1. The Impact of Socio-EconomicStatus on Acceptance of LGBTGifted Students in Urban/Suburban SchoolsNational Association for Gifted Children Annual ConferenceNovember 3, 2006Dr. Gillian ErikssonMr. Christopher R. FriendUniversity of Central Florida 1
  2. 2. Abstract Studies of GLBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender) gifted students face the difficulty of identifying these at-risk students who are hidden, threatened, and oppressed in many schools. The fear of disclosure makes this group difficult to identify, but meeting their unique affective and curriculum needs is crucial. This qualitative study used case studies and interviews to obtain information about the experiences and attitudes to GLBT gifted students in two high schools: one urban, ethnically diverse, and low- income; and one suburban, macro-cultural, and affluent. Includes recommendations for differentiated counseling services for LGBT students.Dr. Gillian Eriksson / Christopher R. Friend / University of Central Florida 2
  3. 3. Rationale Seminar: Presentations by Gay Students Teachers by Panel High Income suburban - more harassment and pressure not to disclose (Dominant culture population) Low Income Inner City - less harassment and open disclosure (Diverse Population) Key Question: What impact does exposure to diverse populations have on acceptance of LGBT gifted students and LGBT teachers of gifted students?Dr. Gillian Eriksson / Christopher R. Friend / University of Central Florida 3
  4. 4. Homophobia in our Schools 80% of tomorrow’s teachers self-report negative attitudes toward LGBT people; one-third of them can be classified as ‘high-grade homophobes.’ 66% of guidance counselors harbor homophobic feelings – only 20% having received any training about LGBT issues (Sears, 1992). Teachers hide their sexual identity and even distance themselves from LGBT youth, decreasing the opportunity to provide guidance out of fear similar to that experienced by their students (Jennings, 1994)Dr. Gillian Eriksson / Christopher R. Friend / University of Central Florida 4
  5. 5. Research Dr Gary Orfield (2005) — little diversity in most high-income schools in spite of Brown v. Board of Education decision. In low-income schools there is greater diversity and concentrated minorities, particularly Hispanic and African-American children. In many states, there are far fewer students in gifted programs at low-income schools, whereas in high-income areas, there is a high percentage identified (Davidson et al, 2004). Minorities are under-represented in gifted programs nationally (Donovan & Cross, 2002).Dr. Gillian Eriksson / Christopher R. Friend / University of Central Florida 5
  6. 6. Ethnic Representation in Gifted Classes (Nationally) % of Student Population % of Gifted Enrollment 40 80 30 70 20 60 10 0 African-American Latino Asian WhiteDr. Gillian Eriksson / Christopher R. Friend / University of Central Florida 6
  7. 7. Difficulties of Identifying Gifted LGBT Students and Teachers Self-identification - outed students Cohn (2003) stated that in a large urban high school of 3,000 students, 3 to 9 students might be both Gifted and LGBT, which significantly limits the probability that these individuals ever connect with one another. Lower incidence in Low-Income of identified gifted Can only interview/case studies of High School Gifted LGBTDr. Gillian Eriksson / Christopher R. Friend / University of Central Florida 7
  8. 8. 1 2 3 4 Pre-Identity Confusion Identity Confusion Identity Comparison Identity Tolerance (early sensorimotor) (late sensorimotor) (early concrete-operational) (late concrete-operational) Belief that one is Realization that one Ability to express Acknowledgment that heterosexual; cannot might be gay (causes feelings as same-sex; one is probably gay; separate self from confusion); focus on unwillingness to identify negative thoughts feelings; sense of behaviors; low self- self as gay regarding homosexuality differentness without esteem; thoughts of known cause "just a phase" 5 6 7 8 Identity Acceptance Identity Pride Identity Synthesis Identity Deconstruction (early formal-operational) (late formal-operational) (early dialectic) (late dialectic) Abstract logic leads to Identification of how Integration of various Continuous self- labeling oneself as past experiences personal identities; development of ones gay; acceptance were affected by reduced anger as one views of self, identity, progresses gradually identity; anger at past considers context; and orientation; homophobia shift to existential refining process questioning Stages in Development The self-identification process for GLBTsDr. Gillian Eriksson / Christopher R. Friend / University of Central Florida 8
  9. 9. Characteristics and Challenges of Gifted LGBT Students (Eriksson & Stewart 2005) Gifted Students LGBT Students Gifted LGBT Students Protection from Heightened sensitivity to Intense awareness and personal discrimination, sanctions social issues ethics and violence Highly developed system of Peer Pressure to Hide Peer Pressure to remain masks and scenarios to protect Giftedness “in the closet” self Knowledge of contributions of Need for intellectual Need for Tolerance and great leaders and achievers who challenge acceptance were/are Gifted and LGBT Need for normalizing Positive peer Need to be supported by other social experiences relationships Gifted and LGBT studentsDr. Gillian Eriksson / Christopher R. Friend / University of Central Florida 9
  10. 10. Characteristics and Challenges of Gifted LGBT Students (Eriksson & Stewart 2005) Gifted Students LGBT Students Gifted LGBT Students Acceptance of diverse family Examination of social/ Awareness of being a and social structures: cultural systems discriminated minority documentation in literature Creative Productivity in Self-esteem and creative Acceptance of diverse forms of creative productivity specific to interest area expression gay community Modification to regular Positive contributions of Incorporation of orientation into curriculum: acceleration, gay achievers curriculum study enrichment Mentoring and Gay Mentors Heroes who are gay and gifted InternshipsDr. Gillian Eriksson / Christopher R. Friend / University of Central Florida 10
  11. 11. Qualitative Design Low SES High SES University High School High School Gifted LGBT S1 High S3 High S5 Low SES Students S2 High S4 High S6 High SES Gifted LGBT T1 Elementary T3 Elementary Teachers T2 High T4 HighDr. Gillian Eriksson / Christopher R. Friend / University of Central Florida 11
  12. 12. Trends: General Gifted LGBT Issues for Students Harassment Isolation Lack of Support Systems Lack of AdvocatesDr. Gillian Eriksson / Christopher R. Friend / University of Central Florida 12
  13. 13. Findings: General Gifted LGBT Issues for Teachers Personal Curricular Personal safety & Collaborations with non-LGBT gifted harassment students on creative products Inclusion of conflict resolution skills, Career stability & promotion emotional intelligence for LGBT gifted Discomfort with discussion Include discussions on safe sex, risk of LGBT issues and topics behaviors, dependence Advocating without Finds outlets for student creative disclosing (inability to serve products in appropriate LGBT as role model) communities (online, publications, etc) Supportive of diverse families including LGBTDr. Gillian Eriksson / Christopher R. Friend / University of Central Florida 13
  14. 14. Findings: SES Gifted LGBT Issues for Students LOW SES HIGH SES Greater tolerance of Lower tolerance of diversity diversity High fear of disclosure Focus on socioeconomic Incidents of bullying and stresses verbal abuse Fear of disclosure Incidents of harassment Fear of bullying/violence Prevalent verbal abuseDr. Gillian Eriksson / Christopher R. Friend / University of Central Florida 14
  15. 15. Findings: SES Gifted LGBT Issues for Teachers LGBT issue integration Diversity in student collaboration Discrimination policies Student safety Support for student groups Professional securityDr. Gillian Eriksson / Christopher R. Friend / University of Central Florida 15
  16. 16. Recommendations for Differentiated Counseling Services Developmental vs Crisis Oriented Approach Trained counselors that support identity stage development/ clarification positive role-models; Positive and tolerant school climate peer support; Anti-bullying strategies Alliances with other gay and/or giftedDr. Gillian Eriksson / Christopher R. Friend / University of Central Florida 16
  17. 17. Model for Culturally Responsive Counseling for Gifted LGBT Gay, 2000, clarified “culturally responsive pedagogy” as: validating; comprehensive; multidimensional; empowering; transformative; emancipatory.Dr. Gillian Eriksson / Christopher R. Friend / University of Central Florida 17
  18. 18. Guidelines for Counselors of Gifted LGBT Students Van Wormer, Wells & Boes (2000) Dismantle heterosexism and infuse Encourage LGBT panels from LGBT throughout school local colleges/universities Promote programs targeting Anti- Informal discussion groups bullying and verbal abuse Ensure school library has Workshops on sexual orientation information on sexual orientation for student leaders, teachers, Link students and families with administrators local resources School based support for students Educate for safe sex, prevention of and families drug/alcohol abuse, high-risk Allow climate for LGBT teachers to behaviors, suicide be role models Maintain complete confidentialityDr. Gillian Eriksson / Christopher R. Friend / University of Central Florida 18
  19. 19. References Cohn, S. (2003). The gay gifted learner: Facing the challenge of homophobia and antihomosexual bias in schools. In J. A. Castellano (Ed.), Special populations in gifted education: Working with diverse gifted learners (pp. 123-134). Boston, MA: Allyn & Bacon. Eriksson, G., and Stewart, T. (2005). Gifted and Gay (G2): The characteristics and educational needs of a dual minority group. University of Central Florida. Gay, G. (2000). Culturally responsive teaching: Theory, Research, and Practice. New York, NY: Teachers College Press. Jennings, K. (Ed.). (1994). One teacher in 10: Gay and lesbian educators tell their stories. New York: Alyson Books. Orfield, G; Chungmei, L (2005) Why Segregation Matters: Poverty and Educational Inequality. Office of Civil Rights. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University. Available at: <http://www.civilrightsproject.harvard.edu/>Dr. Gillian Eriksson / Christopher R. Friend / University of Central Florida 19
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