L.A. Unified School District Resolves to Make Schools Safer for LGBTQ Students in National Coming Out Day Proclamation

LOS ANGELES (Oct. 2, 2013) — Acknowledging that sexual orientation and gender expression-biased bullying are among the most common forms of harassment in schools, the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) Board of Education has approved a resolution to ensure LGBTQ students feel safer on school campuses.

Written by Mónica García, LAUSD Board Member representing District 2, the resolution calls for LAUSD to celebrate the 25th National Coming Out Day on October 11, noting that nearly 25 percent of students have an LGBTQ family member or self-identify as LGBQT, and that district schools are committed to providing safe and affirming spaces for all students and their families.

“National Coming Out Day creates a space for our communities to learn about the struggles of the LGBTQ community and celebrate the diversity of our students and staff,” said Garcia. “We must work together with partners and school staff to create safe learning environments for all students. I am coming out in support of each and every student.”

In recognition of LGBTQ History Month and National Bullying Prevention Month, LAUSD is announcing other initiatives this month to make schools safer for LGBTQ youth. Next week the school district will launch a Coming Out for Safe Schools initiative in partnership with the L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center's Project SPIN (Suicide Prevention Intervention Now).  This week it was announced that the ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives and the L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center will help LAUSD become compliant with California’s new FAIR Act by developing the first comprehensive, LGBTQ-inclusive American history curriculum for public schools. 

“Anti-LGBTQ harassment and bullying not only leads to more LGBTQ students dropping out of school, but makes school feel unsafe for all students,” said Sara Train, the L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center’s coordinator of Project SPIN, a coalition of organizations and community members working to provide support for youth who attend school within LAUSD. “So it’s hugely important that students in L.A.—one of the most diverse metropolitan cities in the world—can feel safe when they go to school every day. It’s fantastic that the LAUSD takes this commitment to the safety of all its students so seriously, and has made a conscious effort to reduce bullying on its campuses.”

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Contact: Lizette Patron (213) 241-6180