Majority of Parents Want Schools to Teach about Gay Issues and Combat Homophobic Bullying
Monday, 08 February 2010
New research from the University of Limerick has found that the vast majority of parents want their children to be thought about sexual orientation and want schools to properly address the huge problem of homophobic bullying.
The research of almost 2,000 parents found that the majority wanted the issue of homophobia on the curriculum because of widespread bullying in schools. Three-quarters of parents indicated that they would trust their sons’ teachers to deal with sexual orientation and homophobia in the classroom.
Researchers visited 120 Irish schools surveying 1,915 parents and conducting follow-up calls to 24 randomly selected families. They found that sexuality and homophobia were major issues, with many parents and teens struggling to cope with the pressures surrounding them.
The vast majority (93pc) of the 1,915 parents surveyed described themselves as Roman Catholic. The study, entitled ‘Gender and Education’, was written by Orla McCormack and Jim Gleeson from the University of Limerick’s department of education and professional studies.
“The fact that the vast majority of parents want their children to be taught about LGBT identity in school does not surprise us at all. Parents have been saying this to us for years. They want their children to be safe and have access to correct information. Parents of LGBT young people want to their children’s identities validated in schools. Parents have never been the barrier to combating homophobic bullying or talking about gay issues in schools,” said Michael Barron, Director, BeLonG To.
A copy of the research can be downloaded here.
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