This Anti-Bullying Week’s theme is “stop bullying for all”. Anti-LGBTQIA+ bullying is the second most common form of bullying in secondary schools, with over half of all LGBTQIA+ students experiencing bullying for their gender and/or sexuality, including cyber-bullying, physical abuse and even death threats.
Our resources will help you tackle bullying, and we’ve focused this year on teaching students about making the right choices to respect others.
Our popular assembly addresses the ubiquitous phrase, “That’s so gay!” The resource also includes a range of follow-up tutor time activities.
To learn more about why microaggressions like these are damaging to young LGBTQIA+ people, read Allie George’s article in Gay Star News.
According to Stonewall, 9/10 teachers receive no training on tackling anti-LGBTQIA+ bigotry, so do read our webpage on recognising and challenging anti-LGBTQIA+ language and behaviours.
For primary schools, we’ve focused on ‘accidental bullying’ – where students may not be aware that they are engaging in bullying behaviours.
Most pupils are aware of where to go for help if they’re being bullied and we’ve also done lots of work on not being a bystander. But we come across a lot of instances of bullying where kids are perplexed to be accused of bullying because they ‘didn’t mean to’ or it’s just ‘banter’.
Sian*, Primary School Teacher
No one likes to think of themselves as a bully. By shifting the emphasis from who a bully is to what is bullying behaviour, this lesson encourages students to think about how their behaviour can impact on others, promoting empathy and consideration.
For secondary school students, we’ve focused on a common issue: consent and boundaries when sharing images.
It’s a rare week that I don’t have to deal with a student sharing an image when they shouldn’t – and it’s often not their own. Students seem to find it amusing to take photos without permission, or to share photos their peers don’t want sharing. Some of these are inappropriate and raise child protection issues, but most are a simple violation of personal boundaries. For the students whose photos are being shared, it can be incredibly distressing, though many of the students perpetrating this behaviour are unaware of the damage it can do.
Xavier*, Pastoral Assistant
The lesson, which can be used for e-safety modules, encourages students to think about why people may not want their images shared, and focuses on consent – a key concept for other PSHE and SEAL topics
LGBTQIA+ students are often bullied because they are seen as different – even “strange” or “abnormal”. By promoting LGBTQIA+ inclusion across the curriculum, we can remove this stigma, and help create safe spaces in schools.
*Names have been changed by request