9 Nov 2018

'Historic moment': Scotland curriculum to include focus on LGBTI issues

11:36 am on 9 November 2018

Scotland will immediately start work to have LGBTI-inclusive education added to its state curriculum.

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Photo: 123RF

As part of the curriculum, all state schools will teach LGBTI equality and inclusion across different age groups and subjects, and be supported by the government to do so.

The learning themes will include LGBTI terminology and identities; tackling homophobia, biphobia and transphobia; prejudice in relation to the LGBTI community; and promoting awareness of the history of LGBTI equalities and movements.

The Scottish government has accepted, and will immediately work to implement, all 33 recommendations from a LGBTI Inclusive Education Working Group.

Deputy First Minister John Swinney has claimed this as a world-first and told parliament: "Our education system must support everyone to reach their full potential. That is why it is vital the curriculum is as diverse as the young people who learn in our schools.

"The recommendations I have accepted will not only improve the learning experience of our LGBTI young people, they will also support all learners to celebrate their differences, promote understanding and encourage inclusion."

In a statement, co-founder of TIE Campaign, the campaign for LGBTI-inclusive education, Jordan Daly, said the implementation of LGBTI-inclusive education across all state schools is a world-first.

"This is a monumental victory for our campaign, and a historic moment for our country."

He said this sends a strong message to LGBTI young people in Scotland that they are valued.

"Education is one of the most vital tools we have to tackle bullying, prejudice and discrimination - and it shapes the fabric of our society."

The Christian Institute has hit out at the move, with deputy director Simon Calvert saying "maths lessons should be about maths, not LGBT politics".

The group said "controversial political agendas" should not be embedded in the curriculum.

Up until 2000, it was against the law to "intentionally promote homosexuality" in Scotland's schools under the "Section 28" rule.

The recommendations to be implemented:

  • To improve LGBTI inclusion
  • Improvement of practice and guidance for teachers
  • Provision of professional learning for current and future teachers
  • Monitoring and school inspections of LGBTI inclusion
  • The recording of incidents of LGBTI bullying in schools
  • RNZ / BBC

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