LGBTQ Youth and Education: Policies and Practices

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Teachers College Press, 2014 - Education - 145 pages

Based on the diverse experiences of LGBTQ students and their allies, this essential volume  brings together in one resource the major issues that schools must address to improve the educational outcomes for gender and sexual minority students—as well as all students. Many of these issues involve negative school-based experiences that teachers and administrators need to be aware of as they interact with students on a daily basis, including those that encourage dropping out, substance abuse, and disproportionate thoughts of suicide. This insightful work not only examines the challenges of discrimination, harassment, and alienation that LGBTQ youth face, but it also captures students’ resilience and creativity in organizing against those challenges. The text includes teaching strategies, innovative projects, curricular revisions, and policy initiatives that have had positive effects on LGBTQ learning, aspirations, and school climate.

Book Features:

Offers a nuanced portrait of students, showing how issues of race, gender, gender identity, and class shape and complicate their experience. Examines the history and contemporary movements for LGBTQ rights. Describes a variety of discipline-based approaches to teaching students to think about LGBTQ-related concerns. Shows examples of youth organizing into extracurricular groups or creating school- and community-based interventions. Highlights the role of online communities and web-based resources.

“This book should be required reading for all K–12 educators and beyond. Departing from the common LG focus of most works on LGBT issues, Mayo offers a crucial analysis of the ways that sexism, transphobia, and homophobia work together to make schools difficult and even dangerous places. Just as importantly, Mayo maintains a refreshing, always practical approach to the ways teachers and administrators can better fulfill the goals of equity for all students.”
—A. Finn Enke, associate professor, History, Gender and Women's Studies, director, LGBT Studies, University of Wisconsin–Madison

“Mayo goes beyond platitudes and calls for tolerance to investigate the specific conflicts and controversies that seem to inevitably swarm around LGBTQ issues in education. What, we often ask, can we do to protect LGBTQ students, teachers, and families from harassment? Mayo offers answers in this incisive, necessary, and accessible book.”
—Jen Gilbert, associate professor, Faculty of Education, York University, Toronto, Ontario

Cris Mayo is professor and associate head in the Department of Education Policy, Organization, and Leadership and the Department of Gender and Women’s Studies at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.


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Background to LGBTQ Movements for Equality with a Focus on K12 Related Issues
Thinking Through Biases and Assumptions About LGBTQ People
Specific SchoolRelated Challenges Facing LGBTQ Students
Educatively Addressing LGBTQ Issues
Supporting Student Extracurricular and Creative Efforts to Educate Schools on LGBTQ Issues
LGBTQ Online Communities and Support
About the Author

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