Professional development training for school personnel on issues related to sexual and gender identity (i.e., SOGI training) is a school strategy designed to prevent health and educational disparities for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) youth at school. Yet we know surprisingly little about how the presence of this practice at school affects students’ experience. This study explores whether students’ experiences of victimization and school climate vary as a function of school administrator support for SOGI training at two time points (2004 and 2014). We combined multiple independent databases: students’ reports on victimization and school climate in 2013–2015 (n = 55,158), and school (n = 152) and school district data (n = 67) on support for SOGI training in 2004 and 2014. More positive school climates were found in schools with support for SOGI training in 2004 only and both 2004 and 2014 compared to schools with SOGI training support in 2014 only. In schools with support for SOGI training in both 2004 and 2014, LGBT students reported the lowest rates of victimization. Findings from this study provide evidence that support for SOGI training by school administration is an effective way to improve school contexts for LGBT and all students. School administrators who aim to reduce victimization disparities for LGBT students and improve school climates should support the implementation of SOGI training, and sustain such training over time.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health