1. School Climate Survey for Issues related to Sexual Orientation and Gender Variant Students

Dear Parent:
The purpose of this survey is to collect information about students who have been bullied, harmed, or harassed in some way due to their actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity. This information will be used to advocate for greater legal protections for all students. It important to emphasis that harassment of this nature is often done due to perceived notions of a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity, and do not relate to the individual’s own self identification. Therefore, if your child is straight but is bullied or harassed because people think of him or her as homosexual, that information would still be useful to us. In addition, if your child is harassed due to your own sexual orientation or gender identity, whether actual or perceived, please also share this information with us. Space will be provided for providing greater context of your family’s particular situation.

The more information you are willing to share, the more helpful your survey will be. However, if you do not feel comfortable with a question, feel free to skip it. If possible, it would be best for accuracy purposes to complete this survey with your child or to allow him or her to complete it by themselves. Also, while we will be accepting anonymous surveys, we would much prefer it if you would give us your name (in whole or in part) and your child’s name. School administrators often claim that bullying and discrimination don’t exist at their school, so the more we can put a “face” on the problem, the more persuasive your story will be. If you have any questions, comments or concerns regarding your child’s school, you may email us at safeschools@equalityalabama.org.

Also, this survey uses certain terminology we’d like to make sure your familiar with before starting.

Sexual orientation: The basis upon which one’s sexual attraction derives. Often referred to as “gay”, “lesbian”, “straight”, “bisexual”, “asexual” or “questioning”. Gay – is used to refer to males with sexual attraction for males. Lesbian- is used to refer to females with sexual attraction for females. Straight- is used commonly to reference attraction by a male or female for the opposite sex. Bisexual- refers to either males or females who feel attraction towards both sexes. Asexual- is a person who has attraction for neither males nor females. Lastly, questioning- is used when people have not determined in which of the categories they belong.
Gender identity: Culturally and biologically gender is a fluid concept. Male in this survey refers to those born with biological male parts and who self-identify as such. Female, likewise, refers to those born with female anatomy and self-identify as female. Transgender defines those born of one gender (male or female or non-gendered), but as a result of self-exploration and at times corrective surgery, become another gender. Non-gender are those people born with both, neither or ambiguous sexual anatomy. They are sometimes called “hermaphrodites.” Non-gender may also refer to persons, who were born with male or female sexual anatomy, but for whatever reason, do not identify with either gender.