This can hit their self-esteem and motivation at school.

“We can't address LGBT+ teenagers' self-harm and exclusion rates without talking openly and positively about LGBT+ people and their contributions to society now, and throughout history. Silence about LGBT+ people is the wrong approach, and fuels homophobic bullying, inequality for LGBT+ workers and hate crime.

“Schools need to be confident that they're right to make sure their Relationships and Sex Education (RSE) education is inclusive of all families and relationships, including LGBT+ people, in an age-appropriate way. RSE is just one area of the school curriculum in which the experiences of LGBT+ students need to be appropriately included if we want to break the cycles of discrimination.

“Schools need to maintain open channels of communication with parents and carers to explain the content of RSE education. There will often be lots of questions from parents, and schools work closely with parents to understand and resolve concerns. Schools find that dialogue with parents can often bring common understanding and will foster confidence in the school's approach.

“Dialogue and relationship building with local leaders from all faith groups can enable schools to build empathy and maintain the trust needed to reassure local parents about the aims of the RSE curriculum for young people and the values of the school.”

ENDS

2019-048-NEU

Note to editors:

We are currently in Liverpool for our Annual Conference (15-18 April), during which time you will receive a higher number of press releases than usual.

The Conference Press Office can be reached on 0151 707 4642 (9am-6pm) and 07879 480 061 (24hrs). The press officer can be reached at caroline.cowie@neu.org.uk

Our conference agenda is available here: https://neu.org.uk/media/3861/view

The hashtag for Annual Conference is #NEU19 .

  • The National Education Union stands up for the future of education. It brings together the voices of more than 450,000 teachers, lecturers, support staff and leaders working in maintained and independent schools and colleges across the UK, to form the largest education union in Europe.
  • It is an independent, registered trade union and professional association, representing its members in England, Wales, Northern Ireland, Scotland, the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands.
  • The National Education Union is affiliated to the Trades Union Congress (TUC), European Trade Union Committee for Education (ETUCE) and Education International (EI). It is not affiliated to any political party and seeks to work constructively with all the main political parties.