LGBT teachers still face harassment and bullying

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The extent to which lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT) teachers still experience harassment and bullying at work has been revealed.

A conference has heard that more than 60 per cent of LGBT teachers have experienced discrimination during the course of their careers. 

More than three quarters have been bullied or harassed and two-thirds said it was not safe to be “out” at work.

The LGBT Consultation Conference, hosted by NASUWT in Birmingham, also found that 60 per cent of teachers reported that their school has no policy which explicitly opposes homophobia, biphobia and transphobia.

Previous research from the Teacher Support Network (TSN) found that a similar number of LGBT teachers had experience discrimination at work. More than eight in 10 said this was from pupils, but almost half said they also suffered at the hands of collegues and a third were discriminated against by managers.

The 2006 TSN study found that only a quarter of schools had a code of conduct on homophobic/biphobic/transphobic behaviour, but that in 65 per cent of cases the policy was not properly enforced.

Chris Keates, general secretary of the NASUWT, said: “It is clear from the feedback from delegates that there is a still a huge amount of work still to do in schools to create a climate where all teachers feel respected and safe, regardless of their sexuality.”

The NASUWT said it intends to lobby government ministers to raise the concerns.


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