School principals’ responses in creating an inclusive schooling space for gender and sexual diverse learners

African Journal of Career Development

Field Value
Title School principals’ responses in creating an inclusive schooling space for gender and sexual diverse learners
Creator Nichols, Henry J.
Subject Education principals; LGBTIQ youth; gender and sexual diversity; heteronormativity; cisnormativity; inclusive education; social justice leadership
Description Background: Numerous policies and initiatives of South African Department of Basic Education mandate principals to ensure inclusive school spaces to support and cater for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, and queer or questioning (LGBTIQ) learners. Yet, heterosexual and cisgender youth are still valorised by principals as the only gender and sexual category in schools.Objectives: Drawing on the social justice leadership theory, this article aimed to add to the conversation on how school principals in their leadership positions can enable a safe and inclusive schooling space for learners with diverse gender identities and sexual orientations.Methods: Principals are mandated to collaborate with the community and parents such as the School Governing Body (SGB), thus the attitudes and responses of these principals through the narratives of parents of LGBTIQ children were examined. As part of a qualitative study, individual interviews were conducted with six parents in the Free State and Gauteng provinces of South Africa, and the data were analysed thematically.Results: The results of this study showed that the principals did not comply with any of these policy requirements or responsibilities and willingly ignored them.Conclusion: Expanding LGBTIQ content in educational leadership training is a necessary step to convince school leaders that LGBTIQ awareness and inclusion are necessary for creating a positive and inclusive schooling climate.Contribution: This study provided reasons for principals to disrupt normative ideas of gender and sexual diversity and the effect of their silence and ignorance.
Publisher AOSIS
Date 2023-10-16
Type info:eu-repo/semantics/article info:eu-repo/semantics/publishedVersion —
Format text/html application/epub+zip text/xml application/pdf
Identifier 10.4102/ajcd.v5i1.95
Source African Journal of Career Development; Vol 5, No 1 (2023); 7 pages 2617-7471 2709-7420
Language eng
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Rights Copyright (c) 2023 Henry J. Nichols