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Schools: Homophobia

Question for Department for Education

UIN HL5200, tabled on 2 February 2017

To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Nash on 1 February (HL5039), how far their three-year programme to prevent and address homophobic, biphobic and transphobic bullying in schools has progressed; whether an action plan for the programme has been published; on what basis (1) local authorities, (2) academy chains, and (3) individual schools, have been contacted to seek information about their experience of such bullying; and how the programme funds are being spent.

Answered on

9 February 2017

The Government announced a £2.8m investment in tackling homophobic, biphobic and transphobic (HBT) bullying in September 2016. This followed the successful completion of a £2m pilot programme last year. Since we announced this programme, a further £0.2m has been allocated in order to enable more robust evaluation and quality assurance of the programme. This brings the total to £3.0m.

Six grantee organisations were selected through open competition to deliver innovative schemes to tackle HBT bullying in schools which have no or ineffective measures in place. These were: Barnardo’s, LGBT Consortium, Metro Charity, National Children’s Bureau, Proud Trust and Stonewall. The Government has also contracted with the PSHE Association to quality assure the resources produced as part of the programme and Sheffield Hallam University to assess the impact of the programme. The funding for the programme is split between these organisations.

Since September, the six grantees have been further developing their implementation plans and they have been registering schools to be part of the programme. The aim is that the grantees will start working with schools during 2017. An action plan for the current programme has not been published and we do not intend to do so. We published the evidence from the pilot programme on GOV.UK in July 2016. A report demonstrating the evidence from, and the impact of, the current programme will be published after this programme concludes in 2019.

The Government has used a wide variety of evidence to inform its decision to tackle HBT bullying, including external research and the evidence from the 2015-2016 pilot programme. The organisations funded through the programme have been and will continue to be in regular contact with local authorities, academy chains and individual schools as they are recruiting schools.