Safe at School: Addressing the School Environment and LGBT Safety through Policy and Legislation

By Stuart Biegel, Sheila James Kuehl
September 2010

This policy brief examines what we know from both litigation and research concerning the challenges faced by lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) youth in America’s public schools. Relying on the growing body of scholarship in this area as well as the successful efforts of many educators to address these issues, it sets forth a menu of policy recommendations, followed by model statutory code. The authors find that students continue to face widespread harassment and bullying on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity, that school site personnel too frequently fail to address this behavior, further exacerbating the situation, and that there are a wide range of steps that educators, policymakers, and legislators can take that will enhance school climate and maximize equal educational opportunity for students of every sexual orientation and every gender identity.

*Brief published in collaboration with the National Education Policy Center and Great Lakes Center for Education Research and Practice.

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