How schools celebrated School Diversity Week 2023
Thousands of schools across the UK celebrated School Diversity Week from 26-30 June.
More schools than ever before got involved in 2023, with more than 6,200 signed up.
What is School Diversity Week?
School Diversity Week takes place every June across the UK. It is a celebration of LGBT+ equality and allyship, showing all young people that being LGBT+ is nothing to be ashamed of.
Ready-to-go resources provided by Just Like Us are entirely free so that teachers can easily start discussions about LGBT+ topics with their pupils.
“As a student in year eight it makes me feel empowered.”
– School pupil
How did schools celebrate School Diversity Week?
Primary and secondary schools UK-wide used Just Like Us’ free resources and celebrated in a range of different ways they chose to. Some schools created incredible displays, taught LGBT+ inclusive subject lessons, ran assemblies and took part in our Rainbow Friday dress-up day.
Many school librarians also created LGBT+ inclusive book displays and put up Just Like Us posters.
“School Diversity Week helps students see that diversity is a good thing and is nothing to be ashamed of,” said one school pupil.
Others said the week made them feel “included and welcomed”, with one adding: “As a student in year eight it makes me feel empowered as it shows diversity to be celebrated and not to be looked down upon.”
Marie Greenhalgh, headteacher at Inclusion College in Hampshire, said: “Don’t miss the opportunity to show support to their LGBT+ pupils, students and staff, and show them they are accepted, celebrated and safe. Educate yourselves, educate your pupils and students, your staff, and shout about it.
“Let’s make this world a more inclusive place, and have a lot of fun doing it!”
MPs from across the political spectrum also took to social media to express their support for School Diversity Week.
“6,000+ schools are celebrating LGBT+ equality and learning what it means to be an ally, thanks to Just Like Us,” said Labour MP Taiwo Owatemi.
Liberal Democrat MP Wendy Chamberlain added: “Growing up LGBT+ is still unacceptably tough, but together we can change that.”
Why prioritise LGBT+ inclusion in schools?
School Diversity Week 2023 took place following the release of Just Like Us’ Positive Futures report, which found supportive school environments lead to LGBT+ people being happier and less ashamed of who they are in adulthood.
Positive Futures showed that LGBT+ young people who are supported at school are four times more
likely to feel optimistic about their future all of the time, compared with those whose school environments are not supportive (31% compared to 7%).
Supportive school environments increased all young people’s optimism for the future, whether or not they were LGBT+.