BREMER State High School captain Jodey Brand and fellow Year 12 student Sarah Hobson surveyed 244 Ipswich students to see if they felt LGBTIQ teens were properly supported and educated.

The resounding response, they said, was 'no'.

The two Ipswich Youth Advisory Council members collated their findings into a report and presented it to the Parliament of Queensland in Brisbane.

The survey carried out by the students presents a sample size of 244 respondents from Bremer, Saint Peter Claver College, St Augustine's College, Rosewood High, Ipswich State High, Kenmore High, Bundamba High, West MAC, Westside Christian College and St Edmund's in Years 10-12.

Jodey said this lack of support and sexual education for LGBTIQ students in Ipswich could damage their mental and physical health.

"Overwhelmingly people were saying you learn all about sex ed in Year 8-10 but nothing about LGBTIQ sexual health or education," he said.

"A lot of people also said they felt like there were a lot of places to get support but they didn't feel comfortable going to them and that they weren't available at school."

Bremer State High School students have conducted a survey to measure support and education of Ipswich's LGBTIQ students.
Bremer State High School students have conducted a survey to measure support and education of Ipswich's LGBTIQ students.

Sarah said, although most schools wanted to stop bullying, none were making discrimination of LGBTIQ students a priority.

"It goes unnoticed. People think it's a problem for another day," she said.

"That's the wrong mindset. It's a problem now to some people and you can't just push it away," Jodey agreed.

Using their results the pair recommended to Education Queensland that the current curriculum and syllabus for health and physical education or personal development classes be adjusted to integrate suitable education regarding sexual health for LGBTIQ students.

They also asked for more general information for all students to help reduce the stigma and raise awareness among students.

"Expanding support services within schools may also provide an option for out of the closet, questioning, or closeted students to seek specialised support," Jodey said.

Results:

  • 50% believe there is a lack of support for bullying of LGBTIQ students in Ipswich schools.
  • 49.5% think confidential support networks are lacking in schools.
  • 54.9% of students say there's not enough support in schools for those questioning gender or sexuality.
  • 19.67% agreed gender identity was taught at their school.
  • 54.5% were not aware of where to find LGBTIQ sexual health support.


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