Council tackles homophobic bullying

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The county council is tops when it comes to tackling homophobic, biphobic and transphobic bullying and celebrating difference in schools.

Stonewall, Britain’s lesbian, gay, bi and trans equality charity, has named Nottinghamshire County Council the tenth best local authority in its Education Equality Index 2016.

The index measures practice and policy at all of the participating local authorities. Fifty local authorities submitted entries to the 2016 index, making it the most competitive to date.

Councillor John Peck, the council’s children and young people’s committee chairman, said: “We are immensely proud of the journey we have made here in Nottinghamshire over the last four years regarding our support for LGBT young people. It’s fantastic to be finally amongst the top ten authorities, but more importantly, this ranking is evidence that we’re beginning to make a significant, positive difference to the lives of many LGBT young people, their families and their schools.

“There is of course no room for complacency, but we are determined to tackle homophobic, bi-phobic and transphobic bullying wherever it exists and ensure our schools and youth clubs are fully inclusive and safe, nurturing spaces for all our young people. We can only do this by working in partnership and involving young people in every aspect of our work.”

Nottinghamshire County Council has established six new LGBT youth groups in areas of the county that previously had no provision. Stonewall delivered training to the leaders of these groups so that they could better understand the current experiences of LGBT young people.

The council engages schools in a variety of innovative ways. In collaboration with another Stonewall Education Champion local authority, Nottinghamshire developed a theatre in education piece for secondary schools on preventing and tackling homophobia, biphobia and transphobia, and more recently it has created a second piece on celebrating difference for infant and primary schools. It has also run a number of competitions, including Notts Says No to Prejudice and Dragons Den 7.

Read the index in full at www.stonewall.org.uk/educationequalityindex