Queensland schools will soon provide for the needs of homosexual and transgender students to stop bullying and discrimination.
The Education Minister believes they may even need unisex toilets and mixed sporting teams.
Celeste Skinner reports.
The government wants to increase support for minority groups such as transgender, homosexual and intersex students.
It believes that can be achieved with better changing rooms, toilet facilities, and mixed sporting teams.
The draft policy also encourages staff to address the students by their preferred gender.
Shelley Argent, Spokesperson PFLAG: “It will give children who are trans a real head start with their education and it will also relieve a lot of the pressure for parents.”
Currently there are few guidelines on how schools are expected to cater to these students, making it difficult for teachers and staff.
Ron Frame, Brisbane North Teachers Union Qld: “I think it is vital that we acknowledge that we have a huge diversity of students within our schools and that we are consciously looking out to protect the best interests of each and every student.”
The Department of Education hasn’t said if schools without homosexual transgender or intersex students have to adopt the guidleines.
While there is a lot of group and individual support for these children in the education system, a policy that sets a standard and well-considered guidelines could make the world of difference for these students.
In the past many students with identity issues have just been sent to to disabled toilets.
VOX: “I think they should give support and that’s good.”
VOX: “I believe that transgender students, just like any other students that are of a minority, should not be discriminated against.”
Celeste Skinner, QUT News.