GLSEN commissioned Lake Snell Perry & Associates to do the first-ever in-depth research on parents’ attitudes about LGBT issues in schools. This pamphlet contains the results and is designed to give safe schools advocates winning messages, formulated by one of the top public opinion research houses in the country, to help make your local efforts as successful as possible. For the first time, we can go forward with messages that rely not on our intuition or our instincts, but on comprehensive research. Click on PDF File to read Talking About Respect: A+ Messages for Those Working to Create Safe Schools for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Youth.
Press Release: 4 out of 5 Parents Say 'Yes' to Protecting LGBT Students
New York, New York (December 4, 2001) - The majority of U.S. parents support inclusive remedies to the harassment and discrimination faced by lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) youth in schools, according to a poll commissioned by the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network, or GLSEN and conducted by Lake Snell Perry & Associates. The survey found that 80% of parents favor "expanding existing anti-harassment and anti-discrimination policies to include lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender students."
"America's parents overwhelmingly favor interventions that address the day-to-day abuse lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students face," said Executive Director Kevin Jennings. "This is heartening news for those who believe that school must teach respect for all, and create safer school days for every student."
The poll also showed that 80% of parents support "teacher sensitivity trainings on tolerance that include instructions on dealing with gay and lesbian harassment in schools." 63% favor "including positive information about gay and lesbian people in middle and high school health and sex education classes"; 60% favor "information about transgender people" in those forums.
"This poll sends a powerful message to school boards that training teachers and implementing inclusive non-discrimination policies have broad-based support among America's parents," said MK Cullen, Public Policy Director. "It's not only right to protect all students from abuse at school, it's right by America's parents for school boards and administrators to act."
Lake Snell Perry & Associates designed and administered a survey of 1000 parents, which was conducted by telephone using professional interviewers from July 31 – August 7, 2001. The survey reached a total of 1,000 parents of children between the ages 5 and 18 nationwide, including 890 randomly distributed interviews, and oversamples of 50 African-American parents and 60 Hispanic parents. All of the parents interviewed were at least 18 years old.
Telephone numbers for the survey were drawn from a random digit dial sample (RDD). The sample was stratified geographically by state based on population of parents. The data were weighted by marital status to reflect actual distribution of the national population of parents. The oversamples were weighted into the base sample to reflect the racial distribution of the national population of parents.
In interpreting survey results, all sample surveys are subject to possible sampling error; that is, the results of a survey may differ from those which would be obtained if the entire population were interviewed. The margin of sampling error for responses to questions asked of all 1000 respondents in this survey is +/- 3.1 percentage points; the margin of error is higher for responses to questions asked of only a portion of the sample and for responses among subgroups.
GLSEN is the largest national network of parents, students, educators and others working to end anti-LGBT bias in K-12 schools. Established nationally in 1995, the organization has become one of the nation's leading voices for equality and safety in America's educational system.