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SOGI-Inclusive Education for Students
The Surrey School District has a legal, ethical, and moral obligation to provide access to education for all students. Because we know from research and experience that students can only learn when they feel safe at school, it is our responsibility to ensure that one of our most vulnerable student populations--our LGBTQ+ youth--is welcomed visibly, represented in curriculum and school events, and protected by policies such as the Safe and Caring Schools 9410.2 Regulation.pdf that that are lived endeavours.
Research by the McCreary Centre ( considering_the_evidence (1).pdf) and GLSEN's National School Climate Survey show us that when we break down gender constructs, that is, the ideas that all girls must look and behave a certain way and that all both must look and behave in an opposite way, students feel more comfortable to be themselves--to look and behave in ways that might not conform to a rigid notion of their gender. Learning about gender and the way different societies in different times and places interpret gender (what it means to act like or be a boy or a girl) opens the door to a greater understanding of gender as more changeable and fluid that we used to think. Many now see gender as more than a two-way street, more of a spectrum than a binary. genderunicorn1.jp
Learning that there are people who don't conform to rigid notions of gender, and understanding when we ourselves to not, is called SOGI-inclusive Education. This kind of learning can help us to appreciate one more kind of diversity in our society and to see that diversity can be a source of pride and strength. SOGI-inclusive education is also important because it can reveal that we have shared human experiences and more similarities than differences.
If you have questions about SOGI or you are LGBTQ+ and looking to connect with other youths or to educate and advocate within your school, there are people and resources to help you. Please talk to your SOGI Lead teacher (ask your administrator), a teacher with a rainbow or SOGI 123 sticker, or any adult you feel safe with. If you feel concerned for your safety, please report harassment to PSST now.
"Things will get better. And more than that, with time, you're going to see that your differences are a source of pride and a source of strength. You'll look back on the struggles you've faced with compassion and wisdom. And that's not just going to serve you, but it will hep you get involved and make this country a better place." (Barack Obama, 2011)
"How Do I Tell my Parents?" parentsbooklet (1).pdf - a guide from Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (FFLAG)
Start a GSA at your school- GSA Start-up.pdf
Timeline of events in Canada's Gay Rights movement: TImeline Canadian LGBTQ+.pdf
Trans Rights BC--know your rights in education
Protecting Surrey Schools Together (PSST) Report homophobic/transphobic bullying and verbal or physical harassment.
Sher Vancouver - support groups and counselling for LGBTQ+ South Asian youth, their families, and allies.
Kwantlen Polytechnic University (Surrey) - Positive Space Kwantlen
Simon Fraser University's Out on Campus
UBC Campus Life (for sexual and gender minorities)
Youth 4 A Change - Surrey-based educators, activists, and advocates on LGBTQ+ youth issues.