Despite California law expressly protecting LGBTQ students, a Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Foundation survey found that these students are not receiving adequate support in their school environments.
In the “California LGBTQ Youth Report,” HRC and researchers at the University of Connecticut detail the experiences of LGBTQ students in the Golden State, and the results show there is much work left to do to create safe, affirming and welcoming schools. In a survey of more than 1,700 LGBTQ students ages 13 to 17, only one-third reported always feeling safe in their classrooms.
Half of all respondents said they had been bullied because of their sexual orientation or gender identity and more than a quarter were threatened with physical violence. Only 10 percent of LGBTQ youth said they felt supported by all of the people who work at their school, while 43 percent reported never being able to use the restroom or locker room that matches their gender identity.
“The report clearly shows that while we have made progress in California, we still have a ways to go, as only a third of LGBTQ students report feeling safe in their classrooms,” said CTA President Eric Heins. “All students deserve to feel safe and welcome at school. As educators, we must do all we can to build an inclusive learning environment that inspires all students.”
This report was written in partnership with CTA, as well as the Association of California School Administrators, California Association of School Counselors, California State Parent Teacher Association, California Association of School Psychologists, California Federation of Teachers, California School Board Association, California School Nurses Organization and Equality California.