Today’s issue of The Washington Post has a thoughtful piece on kids coming out at a younger age today. Lindy Garnette, Executive Director of Metro DC PFLAG, is quoted in the piece. With kids coming out earlier, parents are asking different questions and school are facing new issues.
The story illustrates not only the need for comprehensive anti-harassment policy in school but the critical component of the education process that must go hand in hand with the policy. As kids identify at a younger age, and schools, not only high schools but more and more middle schools address the issue, we must work to ensure that teachers, administrators and students get training they need to need to create safe and supportive schools for all students. It is up to all of us to speak up and speak out for students safety.
In the piece, Doris Jackson, the principal of a Virginia high school, has it right when she says that the school does not tolerate bullying for any reason. "To me, it's more than having a policy and enforcing it. It's establishing an environment of tolerance of everyone." I could not agree more.