10-year anniversary, the 11th annual Day of Silence was
observed Wednesday in some 4,000 schools around the country,
with an estimated 500,000 students participating.
Organized by the Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education
Network, the event is meant to call attention to the
silencing of LGBT youth in schools through bullying and harassment.
"Today hundreds of thousands of students are
taking action and responding to the problem of
anti-LGBT bullying and harassment—a problem
they see in their hallways and classrooms every day," GLSEN
founder and executive director Kevin Jennings said in
a statement. "I commend each and every young person
today as they tell their truths to their classmates
During the Day of Silence, LGBT students
and their allies refrain from speaking throughout the
school day to make visible the silence many suffer on
a regular basis. At the end of the day, many schools have
"Breaking the Silence" events with guest speakers and
community members to discuss what happened.
In conjunction with the Day of Silence, GLSEN is
releasing the results of its 2005 National School
Climate Survey, which show that bullying and
harassment of LGBT students continues to be common. (The