6 in 10 Flemish LGBTQI+ pupils feel unsafe at school

Six out of 10 LGBTQI+ students in Flanders feel unsafe at school because of their sexual orientation, according to a survey conducted by çavaria, the Flemish advocacy group for the LGBTQI+ community. The group is campaigning for the compulsory inclusion of LGBTQI+ issues in primary and secondary school curricula.

The survey measured the climate in Flemish schools in the 2021-2022 school year and is a follow-up to a survey conducted five years ago. According to the group, the situation has not improved.

It found that 60.4 percent of LGBTQI+ students feel unsafe at school because of their sexual orientation. Two in three avoid certain places at school because they feel unsafe, such as the playground. Four in 10 sometimes avoid extracurricular activities and about a quarter of students avoid going to school because they feel unsafe.

Anti-LGBTQI+ remarks

Almost all respondents have experienced anti-LGBTQI+ remarks. Half say they have experienced anti-LGBTQI+ comments from teachers or other school staff at least once. Eight out of 10 students say that teachers rarely or never intervene in such comments.

According to çavaria, the survey proves the need for an inclusive school climate. Education umbrella organisations should explicitly include the issue in their primary and secondary school curricula, the group argues. "It is the role of the Flemish government to make this mandatory, to continue to encourage them and to monitor them."


#FlandersNewsService | © PHOTO INTI OCON / AFP

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