The Department of Education (DoE) is committed to providing a safe and supportive learning environment for all students and staff, including those who are same-sex attracted, gender diverse or intersex.
The DoE Learner Wellbeing and Behaviour Policy requires schools to provide safe and inclusive learning environments so all learners have the opportunity to strive for excellence and reach their potential.
We believe quality education is based on the principles of respectful relationships, acceptance and inclusion of all students. The Department of Education’s Learners First Strategy 2014–17 states that one of its core values is ‘Equity’ and how we all have the right to challenging and engaging learning opportunities in appropriate settings. These core values are further described in the Respectful Schools and Workplaces Strategic Framework.
Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender and Intersex (LGBTI) Strategic Issues in Education Working Group
The Department of Education convened the LGBTI Strategic Issues in Education Working Group in 2012. The role of the Working Group is to:
- Assist the DoE with specific tasks in relation to LGBTI issues in education as assigned by the Secretary
- Recommend to the Secretary tasks relating to LGBTI issues in education which align with DoE policy and which will assist in providing safe and supportive learning environments for all students and staff.
- Provide advice when appropriate on national documents such as the Australian
- Curriculum and the National Safe Schools Framework.
The Working Group has developed the Guidelines for Supporting Sexual and Gender Diversity in Schools and Colleges.
The Working Group has also contributed to the development of the Department's Inclusive Language Guidelines.
Safe Schools Coalition Australia (Tasmania)
Safe Schools Coalition Australia supports schools to be safe and inclusive learning environments for same sex attracted, intersex and gender diverse young people. The Foundation for Young Australians has been funded by the Australian Government to implement this program across every state and territory.
Safe Schools Coalition Australia (Tasmania) is available to all schools. Working it Out is excited to be working as the local Tasmanian partner to deliver the Safe Schools Coalition Australia program to Tasmanian schools.
A range of resources and support tools are available to schools including professional learning; staff and student audits; resources and tailored support and guidance on specific issues.
Rainbow Communities Tasmania celebrates awards every two years. At the 2013 Annual Rainbow Dinner the department received the Corporation Award for our work towards achieving systematic change in supporting LGBTI students.
The department has been conscious of setting a leading example in this area to ensure all young people who identify as LGTBI are included and supported in education in Tasmania and to provide approaches to combat discrimination, harassment and bullying based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
The Dorothies 2014
LGBTI support service group Working it Out's 2014 Dorothies Awards focused on inclusive school communities with Ulverstone High School selected as the overall winner this year.
In addition to Ulverstone High, three schools were highly commended by Working it Out - Gagebrook Primary School, Rose Bay High School and Don College.
Department of Premier and Cabinet (DPAC) LGBTI Grants Program
DPAC administers a Grants Program providing $50,000 annually to assist community organisations and tertiary institutions to:
- Increase the number of Tasmanians who are accepting of diversity;
- Reduce the number of discrimination complaints lodged on grounds of sexual orientation; and
- Improve resilience and capacity in the LGBTI community.
There are a number of government and private organisations that provide information and services for LGBTI identified people including:
- Department of Premier and Cabinet
- Department of Health and Human Services
- Office of the Anti-Discrimination Commissioner
- Tasmania Police
- Tas Pride
- Working it Out
To access information about these organisations and the work they do please click on the weblinks under Further Information (right)
School Information Brochures - Support Areas
have been developed in hard copy and online formats for parent and community member information.