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Scotland Set to Become First Country With LGBTQ Rights Curriculum

Scotland Set to Become First Country with LGBTQ Rights Curriculum

Scotland is poised to make history with a curriculum that includes LGBTQ rights and history, homophobia, and transphobia. 

Scotland will begin incorporating LGBTQ history and issues into a mandatory curriculum with no opt-outs or exemptions, The Scotsman reports.

It will become the first country to do so, according to the Scottish government, and the Time for Inclusive Education campaign made the recommendation that Scotland's schools become more inclusive.

"This is a monumental victory for our campaign and a historic moment for our country. The implementation of LGBTI-inclusive education across all state schools is a world first," said TIE cofounder Jordan Daly. "In a time of global uncertainty, this sends a strong and clear message to LGBTI young people that they are valued here in Scotland."

In a TIE study, four in five teachers said they do not feel like they have the proper training to combat homophobia. Nine in 10 LGBTQ students reported they experienced homophobia in school, and 27 percent of those students revealed they attempted suicide after experiencing bullying. The same study also indicated that students and even schools had little understanding about the prejudice that intersex people face.

John Swinney, Scotland's education secretary, is proud that Scotland is the first to roll out required LGBTQ inclusive curriculum.

"Scotland is already considered one of the most progressive countries in Europe for LGBTI equality. I am delighted to announce we will be the first country in the world to have LGBTI-inclusive education embedded within the curriculum," Swinney said speaking at Holyrood, according to The Scotsman. "Our education system must support everyone to reach their full potential. That is why it is vital the curriculum is as diverse as the young people who learn in our schools."

Though much of the response is positive, there are still outspoken opponents like the deputy director of the Christian Institute, Simon Calvert, who said "political agendas" should be kept out of the classroom and that LGBTQ people are "radical" and "intolerant of traditional religious views," The Scotsman reports.

In response to Calvert's pushback, Swinney said, "Human rights and the values of respect and tolerance are universal. Children and young people should feel happy, safe, respected and included in their learning environment, and all staff should be proactive in promoting positive relationships and behavior in the playground, classroom and society."

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