LGBTQ+ Quality Mark

LGBTQ+ Quality Mark

Belong To is delighted to launch our new evidence-based LGBTQ+ Quality Mark designed to support and accredit LGBTQ+ Safe and Supportive Schools. 

In Ireland, 73% of LGBTQ+ young people reported that they do not feel safe at school. However, research shows that effective school-based interventions can improve the lives and experiences of LGBTQ+ students.  

In 2022, Belong To will partner with 35 post-primary schools nationwide to support them in working towards achieving the Belong To LGBTQ+ Quality Mark. 

The Process

1. Recognise 

Recognise and promote existing supports for your LGBTQ+ school community. Together we will identify the key strengths in your existing approach to LGBTQ+ inclusion. Belong To will provide training and resources on how to do this including a user friendly toolkit which you can use to identify your strengths and areas for development.  

2. Build & Grow 

Build on these existing supports, and grow as an LGBTQ+ Safe and Supportive School through inclusive practice and policies. Once the areas for development have been identified, together we can create a bespoke plan with key action areas for your school. Belong to will provide best practice recommendations in line with the Department of Education and practical ideas, suggestions and templates to support you every step of the way. 

3. Achieve 

Celebrate your commitment by attaining the Belong To LGBTQ+ Quality Mark.  

Once your schools has demonstrated best practice across the key actions areas, you can apply for your LGBTQ+ Quality Mark and become recognised across Ireland as an LGBTQ+ Safe and Supportive School. 

The LGBTQ+ Quality Mark is a whole school approach  which focuses on the four key areas of wellbeing promotion from an LGBTQ+ perspective: 

  • Creating an LGBTQ+ culture and environment 
  • Resourcing an LGBTQ+ inclusive curriculum 
  • Nurturing LGBTQ+ inclusive relationships and partnerships 
  • Supporting LGBTQ+ inclusive policies and  planning 

Resources and Supports:

Belong to will provide the following supports to schools embarking on this journey of inclusion:

Membership of our National Network of LGBTQ+ Inclusive Schools: Your school will become part of our Nation Network of LGBTQ+ Inclusive Schools where your team will have the opportunity to learn and share ideas, opportunities and the most up to date research and best practice in the field.

LGBTQ+ Support Team Training: Training will be provided for the school LGBTQ+ Support Team of 3-5 teachers who will take on the coordination of this initiative.

All Staff Training: Belong To will come into your schools and train your full staff to ensure they feel confident and empowered supporting LGBTQ+ young people and

Youth Group Training: When visiting your school Belong To will meet with your student council/diversity group or LGBTQ+ group to support and empower them.

1-to-1 Supports: Our dedicated Education and Training Team are always available to support you by phone, email or Zoom!

Resources: Belong To will provide comprehensive resources supporting the school through every aspect of this journey including best practice guidance, practical toolkits, activity ideas, templates, posters, presentations and much more built from our three year with schools across the country.

Getting Involved:

Participation in 2022/23 is strictly limited to 35 schools in 2022.

It is anticipated that it will take 1.5 years to achieve the LGBTQ+ Quality Mark, however timeline will be bespoke based on the level of action needed to meet requirements and the needs of the school.

The participation cost is €845 per school which includes all training, resources and supports detailed above. However, we are delighted to say that funding has become available to offset some of the participation costs.

To express your interest, please complete our application form below before May 27th.  

Q-Mark Application Form

For any enquiries, please contact Stephen Cassidy: stephen@belongto.org / 01 670 6223.