Safe, not straight

The rainbow flag (Photo credit: ACLU)
  1. Schools should have gender-neutral bathrooms in addition to bathrooms marked out for boys/men and girls/women.
  2. Schools should not shy away from teaching about sexuality and relationships.
  3. Sexuality education programmes in schools should not be heteronormative. They should address the needs of individuals of varying sexual orientation or preference.
  4. Teacher and parent training is essential to cultivate awareness and sensitivity.
  5. Counselling services and mental health support should be available to all students.
  6. Schools should have a no-bullying policy.
  7. Books, films and other forms of popular culture should be used to combat prejudices.
  8. Medical professionals should be invited to give health advice about sexually transmitted diseases.
  9. There should be a strict policy about non-disclosure of students’ sexual orientation or preference and their gender identity.
  10. Schools should show zero tolerance towards sexual violence.
  11. Trusting the child is important.
  12. Gender inclusion ought to be embedded into the curriculum.
  13. The library should be stocked with resources to create awareness about LGBTQ+ experiences and issues.
  14. Schools should keep a box wherein students can anonymously write their questions and complaints on pieces of paper and drop them in. These should be addressed promptly.
  15. Guest speakers from the LGBTQ+ community should be invited to schools.
  16. Schools should ensure diversity in hiring policies and practices.
  17. An inter-disciplinary approach should be adopted so that these issues are discussed in language, biology, literature, art and social science classes.
(Book cover: Duckbill Books)

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Writer, educator and researcher

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Chintan Girish Modi

Chintan Girish Modi

Writer, educator and researcher

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