Different family dynamics are one of the most controversial hot topics in education today.
It is becoming more common for students to come from a variety of different backgrounds and upbringing. Many students come from divorced homes, or are raised by guardians that are not their biological parents. Recently there are more students that come from a family with gay parents.
Whichever the situation may be, all students and parents should feel welcome at the school and in the school’s community.
Here are 10 ways to embrace gay parents in the elementary school.
1) Schools should have posters around the school that demonstrate hot topics in education and diversity in families, especially of two parents of the same sex. Posters around the school can show the variety of families, allowing students to become familiar with diverse family situations. In elementary school, it is beneficial for students to be familiarized with different family backgrounds, in order to instill acceptance of others.
2) Schools must maintain a safe environment that does not permit crude or offensive language based on sexual orientation. Any harassment based on sexual orientation will not be tolerated at the school. Parents should be made aware that the school will not tolerate such behavior from students. Hot topics in education include the current rise in bullying among students; the elementary school should take action if there are any reports of bullying occurring. Bullying can have detrimental effects on a student and their schoolwork. Parents should feel confident that their child will have a positive school experience, and will not be subjected to bullying among their peers.
3) Gay parents should always feel welcome in joining school events, and be free to chaperone or volunteer at school activities. They should always feel welcome to join PTA meetings, and give their opinion on school matters, as well as hot topics in education affecting the school. All parents should feel free to give their opinion, in regards to the school and their child’s curriculum. Sexual orientation does not play a part in the parents’ involvement with the school; gay parents will have the right to participate in any school activity. Gay parents must feel safe in the school, and feel free of judgment in the education community.
4) All teachers will be accepting of the students’ backgrounds and willing to educate the class about different types of families. A hot education topic with teachers will be teaching students about different family situations. This will educate the classroom about sexual orientation and sexual identity and make it not such a foreign idea to the young students. This curriculum should be taught along with explaining other family dynamics, such as parents who are divorced and parents of different races. Students will be educated and taught to be understanding of the fact that their peers come from many different backgrounds.
5) Students of gay parents should feel comfortable illustrating their family tree. Teachers should accept the illustration openly, and not force questioning, or make the student feel uncomfortable. Hot topics in education have been how to display the family situation, and family trees are a terrific way for students to see different illustrations of all kinds of families.
6) School forms need to be updated to the term “Guardian”; this is a modern approach that is considerate towards gay parents, since the typical form with just “Mother” or “Father” is outdated and not modernized for gay parents.
7) All guidelines established by the school should consider gay parents. It is time for schools to modernize their guidelines and to consider all varieties of family dynamics.
8) Schools will not permit abuse or harassment from other parents to gay parents. If there is information demonstrating that there was harassment, then action must be taken by the school. Parents will need to sign guidelines, which state they will not subject harassment onto other families in the school system.
9) Guidance counselors and faculty need to be made aware of the student’s situation, in order to be ready for possible harassment and bullying by other students. Gay parents should feel free to contact faculty, in regards to harassment, and faculty should communicate with gay parents if a bullying issue arises. Parents should feel the ability to communicate with the school concerning any issue.
10) Schools can have the students put on a performance that embraces different family situations, including gay families. All parents should be welcome to this performance that demonstrates these different families. This performance will not only educate the students about diversity but also the parents. The performance will show parents how the school and students address hot topics in education including diversity issues, which the students have been learning.
These are just a few ways for schools to have gay parents feel welcome and accepted in the school community. Acceptance of all backgrounds will be one of the hot topics in education for students. The school should make an effort for gay parents to feel confident that their child will be accepted and in a safe environment. The school is responsible for embracing the student’s background and not make them critical of their home environment. Since family dynamics will continue to be hot topics in education for a while, it is essential for schools to be prepared for students from a variety of different backgrounds.
Read about another growing issue in schools – How to Support Transgender Children in School
Here is an infographic about this important topic that you can share with others.