10:09 AM

LGBTQ Students Share Insight, Experiences with Future Teachers

Colin Dalton, assistant professor of urban education, recently invited Joan Vallardes, Robert Martinez and Morgan McAllister, executive officers of Stand Out LGBTQ, UHD's lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer student organization, to give his class an informative presentatiLGBTQ presentationon about LGBTQ experiences in elementary and secondary school.

The future secondary school teachers in Dalton's class heard personal stories from gay and lesbian university students about their childhood experiences at school and at home. The presentation covered topics of bullying, self-identity, inclusion, gay rights and acceptance.

Morgan McAllister, secretary of Stand Out, said, "I loved the talk. The students were so receptive, and I really enjoyed getting the chance to share my story."

According to Dalton, all the future teachers in his class will eventually teach LGBTQ students, and they need to be aware of LGBTQ students' concerns in order to create a positive, inclusive classroom environment.

"It is definitely important for future teachers to be aware of LGBTQ issues," says Valladares, "because as educators, they need to create safe spaces in order for their students to be successful in the classroom and outside of the classroom."