Looking to be a better ally? This one is for you.
First. Do you know of an LGBTQ person who is in need of help? Call the Trevor Project immediately.
Let’s talk about what the power of being an ally means to the LGBTQ community. We will utilize our friends at GLSEN for the perfect definition:
A good example of an ally in a school setting would be the following:
Taylor is walking down the hall at school. Two other classmates are down the hall whispering to each other, making fun of Taylor because of her gender identity. Out of nowhere, Dustin arrives and interrupts the two snickering. “Remember that one time you made fun of Taylor? Yeah me neither, because this will be the last time. I am talking to the teacher about this right now.” The teacher then has a conversation with the parents of the two taunting Taylor, and sends them home with this guide to read to their children.
In this setting Dustin and the teacher are the allies.
Three cheers for these two allies and all the allies in this world.
Check out five additional ways to be an awesome ally to your LGBTQ classmates:
- The most simple way is to stand up against anti-LGBTQ harassment. Report it immediately to your teacher or through another reporting mechanism at your school.
- Don’t assume the gender identity or sexual orientation of your classmate. Ask your classmate for their pronouns. But how? Simply ask, “What are your pronouns?” Then introduce yourself, “I am….and my pronouns are he/him/his (or she/her/hers or they/them/theirs).”
- Join your local GSA.
- Be supportive of classmates who come out, and listen to their experiences.
- Stand by classmates who want to use the restroom that is appropriate for them and their gender identity.
Five ways to support your LGBTQ students:
- Do not out your students to their classmates.
- Have zero tolerance in your classroom for anti-LGBT rhetoric.
- Be inclusive of LGBTQ characters in your classroom library. Here are some suggestions for you. Here are picture books, chapter books, and young adult reads to get you started.
- Practice inclusive language including pronoun usage.
- Read this guide from the National Education Association.
Need more? Check out these additional tips for community members.
Questions, you can always give us a call at 314-862-4900.
Lastly, thank you allies, thank you.