This summer, we’re drowning out the hate and hostility with a tidal wave of queer joy!
This year for School Diversity Week, akt and Just Like Us have partnered up to create a series of resources for students and teachers, to support them in making their schools a welcoming and uplifting environment for LGBTQ+ young people.
akt partners with just like us for school diversity week:
Each year School Diversity Week takes place on 26 – 30 June across the UK. It’s a chance for primary and secondary schools to bring students and staff together to celebrate the different identities that make up a school community.
School Diversity Week already has more than 5,000 schools UK-wide signed up to take part. As part of the programme, these schools receive ideas for school-wide events celebrating LGBT+ equality, subject-specific LGBT+ inclusive lesson plans, resources for SEND schools and faith schools, extracurricular resources including reading lists and videos.
There will be LGBTQ+ young people in every school, and by providing them with an atmosphere where they are comfortable, supported, and able to access information about their identity, schools will be gifting them with stability in the future.
when there is silence, there is shame, so we must talk about these topics in school and at home to ensure LGBT+ young people no longer live in fear of rejectionAmy Ashenden (Interim CEO of Just Like US)
akt works with young LGBTQ+ people aged 16 to 25 who are at risk of or experiencing homelessness. Almost two thirds (64%) of LGBTQ+ young people akt worked with in 2021 said homelessness made it hard for them to establish or maintain new relationships, including friendships. Being part of a school community that is embracing and encouraging of differing LGBTQ+ identities will provide a safe space for LGBTQ+ young people who might not have support in other areas of their lives.
Our research has shown that 77% of the young people we support cite rejection or abuse from their families after coming out as the main reason they have become homeless. Young people from hostile backgrounds are more likely to be at risk of homelessness, and by educating young people about youth homelessness across diversity week, schools will be helping prevent these outcomes for their own students.
it is vitally important that schools are a place where young LGBTQ+ people are free to express themselves in a safe and encouraging atmosphere. we hope that the joint resources from akt and Just Like Us can be a key tool in helping schools identify if LGBTQ+ students are struggling, and facilitating an environment where LGBTQ+ young people are celebrated for who they areHayley Speed (Assistant Director of Services for akt)