The Scottish Government announced plans to introduce an extensive world first LGBTI curriculum in schools across the country.
Scotland’s Deputy First Minister John Swinney told parliament today (8 November) the new education program will commence immediately.
All state schools will now teach themes like LGBTI terminology and identities, tackling homophobia, biphobia and transphobia, prejudice in relation to the LGBTI community and promoting awareness of the history of LGBTI equalities and movements.
The LGBTI curriculum came about after the Scottish government launched an LGBTI Inclusive Education Working Group.
The group had 33 recommendations and the Scottish government said they will implement all of them.
‘Scotland is already considered one of the most progressive countries in Europe for LGBTI equality,’ Deputy First Minister John Swinney said in a press release. ‘I am delighted to announce we will be the first country in the world to have LGBTI inclusive education embedded within the curriculum.
‘Our education system must support everyone to reach their full potential. That is why it is vital the curriculum is as diverse as the young people who learn in our schools.’
Swinney then added: ‘The recommendations I have accepted will not only improve the learning experience of our LGBTI young people, they will also support all learners to celebrate their differences, promote understanding and encourage inclusion.’
‘Historic moment’ for Scotland
The Time for Inclusive Education (TIE) Campaign have been pushing for LGBTI-inclusive education for years.
Co-founder Jordan Daly said: ‘After three years of campaigning, we are delighted that LGBTI inclusive education will now become a reality in all of Scotland’s state schools.
‘This is a monumental victory for our campaign, and a historic moment for our country.
‘The implementation of LGBTI inclusive education across all state schools is a world first. In a time of global uncertainty, this sends a strong and clear message to LGBTI young people…
‘Education is one of the most vital tools we have to tackle bullying, prejudice and discrimination. It shapes the fabric of our society,’ Daly then added.
Daly furthermore added: ‘We now look forward to continuing our work with the Scottish Government as we progress towards full implementation.’
The TIE Campaign have also previously worked with Academy Award-winning actress Emma Thompson.
As an ambassador for the campaign, she said: ‘Any young person indulging in homophobic bullying is a teenage dinosaur who should just go and sit coughing over a sherry in an old white men’s club.’
She furthermore said: ‘It’s not cool, it’s not intelligent and it’s not attractive.’
A Scottish man also raised money for the TIE Campaign. He asked for donations to the campaign through running a half marathon, a skydive, and shaving his head.