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Homophobic bullying and church schools

by
12 July 2013

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From Dr Rachel Jepson and Mr Robin Hall

Sir, - We welcomed the Archbishop of Canterbury's profound commitment to tackling homophobic bullying in schools, announced at General Synod.

Nevertheless, it seems, the Board of Education has some catching up to do. In answer to questions that we tabled at Synod, we were told that the Board has no data on the number of homophobic bullying incidents in Church of England schools - although the Archbishop revealed to the Synod the appalling statistic that 97 per cent of gay teenagers report such bullying.

Moreover, the Board has yet to investigate new materials and resources to counteract such incidents. Archbishop Welby committed the Church to using the "best advice we can find anywhere". We recommend that the Board consider the excellent anti-bullying material produced by Stonewall.

We firmly believe that the Church of England could be an example of best practice in tackling homophobic bullying in schools, and we hope that the Board will explore all the data, material, and resources available to it.

RACHEL JEPSON
Synod member for Birmingham

ROBIN HALL
Synod member for Southwark

c/o 24 Kitto Road
London SE14 5TW

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