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DOI

10.14221/ajte.2016v41n10.2

Abstract

While little is known about parental beliefs and desires regarding LGBTQ-inclusive education, assumptions about these appear to justify teachers’, curriculum writers’ and policy makers’ silences regarding sexuality and gender diversity in the K-12 classroom. Thus, in order to better inform educators’ practices, this paper presents an analysis of interview data from focus groups with parents from across the Australian state of New South Wales. Findings highlight parents’ desires for LGBTQ-inclusivity, not only as a protective factor for sexuality and gender diverse students, but also to engender social cohesion and prepare all students for adult life in the modern social landscape. Parents struggled with the complexities of promoting positive social values through compulsory content while simultaneously respecting diverse sets of values and parents’ rights to frame such topics according to a private set of beliefs. Furthermore, parents advocated for teacher training in this area and were eager for teachers and school leadership staff to feel departmentally-supported to enact LGBTQ-inclusive practices.

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Link to publisher version (DOI)

10.14221/ajte.2016v41n10.2