San Francisco schools add gay services

Despite a $113 million budget shortfall, the San Francisco school board voted to spend $120,000 on gay issues, reports the San Francisco Chronicle.

The resolution calls for adding a district position to manage “lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning” youth issues. It also requires the district to keep tabs on harassment and discrimination based on sexual orientation and distribute educational packets every year to parents encouraging them to discuss sexuality, gender identity and safety with their children.

About 13 percent of the city’s middle school students and 11 percent of high school students say they are gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender, according to a district survey. Gay students are much more likely to say they skip school because they don’t feel safe there.

But all that will change when a new administrator is hired, right?

TeachHub asks: Are gay-friendly schools a good idea? Creating special schools for victims of bullying and harassment assumes it’s impossible to make regular schools safe for vulnerable kids.

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Comments

  1. Sorry to say, it doesn’t look like that poor administrator will be administering anything. That pricetag provides a salary, benefits, an office and perhaps a few supplies, and not much else. No–“gay friendly” schools are not THE answer, although they may perhaps be AN answer along the way. If I were that poor “administrator,” I might consider a pilot project to be an acceptable use of limited to non-existent resources. But–there would need to be real clarity that “gay-friendly” is not the same as “gay only,” which is where the real danger lies. Setting aside a school where it is not acceptable to bully, harass, prolytize, annoy, beat-up on, exclude, call names or otherwise mistreat the kids who are gay, does risk sending the message that in other schools this is OK. It is not.

  2. Rather than have a “gay” school, I’d rather have a “bully” school. We used to call that “Opportunity School”, the last stop before being expelled for bad behavior.

  3. M/M has an excellent point.

    “Setting aside a school where it is not acceptable to bully, harass, prolytize, annoy, beat-up on, exclude, call names or otherwise mistreat the kids who are gay, does risk sending the message that in other schools this is OK. It is not”

    How about setting up a school where is it not accept to mistreat ANY kid.

    And, like Darren says, the kids/parents/teachers who find that type of school unacceptable can go to the opportunity school.

  4. Jane you are totally correct, except why set aside one school? What part of school codes and guidelines tolerates abuse and bullying of anyone? Can administrators just enforce the rules and consequences that are already in place. Stop spending money you do not have and make the administrators do their jobs.

    Margo/Mom makes a great point: Why are we always looking for THE answer. There is no one answer; no panacea. What works in one school in one region of the country with one set of demographics, with one size school, etc will most likely not work in another setting.

    Darren … you are a genius. Refer to my initial paragraph.

  5. Mrs. Lopez says:

    Margo and Jane, what is “prolytize”? I could not find it in Merriam-Webster.

  6. Mrs. Lopez:

    They meant: proselytize

    (I’m a HS math teacher but I learned spelling in Australia where I went thru the 8th grade before emigrating to the USA.)

    Main Entry: pros·e·ly·tize
    Pronunciation: \?prä-s(?-)l?-?t?z\
    Function: verb
    Inflected Form(s): pros·e·ly·tized; pros·e·ly·tiz·ing
    Date: 1679

    intransitive verb 1 : to induce someone to convert to one’s faith
    2 : to recruit someone to join one’s party, institution, or causetransitive verb : to recruit or convert especially to a new faith, institution, or cause

    — pros·e·ly·ti·za·tion \?prä-s(?-)l?-t?-?z?-sh?n, ?prä-s?-?l?-t?-\ noun

    — pros·e·ly·tiz·er \?prä-s(?-)l?-?t?-z?r\ noun

  7. Mike Curtis says:

    If I break your nose, do you really think you should address the reason why I did it; or, should you address my responsibility for my behavior?

    Setting up safe harbors will do little to prevent bullies from reaching their potential. If you corral your sheep, you’ve only protected your stock temporarily. Eventually, predators will find a way to bypass your defense. Sometimes, you just have to kill the wolves.

    Perhaps it would be best to corral the bullies and let them feast on each other.

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