Thursday, August 10, 2006

Gay kids in school have a difficult enough time as it is. To have their thoughts invisibilised is a tough thing to have to go through. If you are straight you identify with David and Victoria Beckham or Justin Timberlake and Cameron Diaz etc, and read all the celebrity gossip on Newsround's website. And if you are gay and watch Newsround, then what?

As reported earlier in this blog, Newsround's former editor believes that homophobic bullying isn't a topic that should be covered for the "target audience." It could better be left to later. But academic research has established that this kind of homophobia occurs at all ages, including Key Stage 1 where it often starts.

An example of bullying in primary school is what happened to Damilola Taylor who was 10 when he was murdered.

Damilola's father last chatted to his son on the internet. "He was telling me he was being bullied in the class. He was being harassed. He was being called names. ...I was shocked when my wife told me on the phone that the headmaster just brushed her off with a statement that it is a usual thing in the school and that the situation will normalise after some time."

Damilola's mother, Gloria Taylor, spoke of how bullies had been threatening Damilola. "The bullies told him that he was gay. He came home and asked me what gay meant. ..I told his teachers but they wouldn't listen."

No comments: