by Maria Sofou
Georgia is opening its first LGBT high school and it’s groundbreaking! The Pride School Atlanta will apparently be aimed at attracting lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans students from age 5 to 18 that feel not accepted in traditional schools. If you think about the shocking statistics that show that nearly 9 in 10 LGBT students report experiencing harassment within the last school year, and three in 10 report missing a class because they felt unsafe, this is a huge step towards creating educational safe spaces for all students to be accepted and respected.
According to the Associated Press, the mastermind behind the concept is Christian Zsilavetz, a trans veteran teacher who wanted to support teens that feel “different”. “Kids have full permission to be themselves – as well as educators,” he told the agency. “Where there’s no wondering, ‘Is this teacher going to be a person for me to be myself with?’ This is a place where they can just open up and be the best person they can be.”
“When (LGBT) kids can see you, when they know that they can come to you, they’re less likely to die (or be suicidal), for one,” Zsilavetz continued. “They’re less likely to get pregnant, when they don’t really want to get pregnant. They’re less likely to get into drugs and alcohol and into depression.”
Christian Zsilavetz, the director of Pride School Atlanta, is hoping to start the private school this summer.