What is LGBT Inclusive Education?

LGBT Inclusive Education refers to including LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender) people and history in the school curriculum. This helps learners understand that LGBT people are an equal part of our society and lets LGBT young people feel included in their learning. It also supports schools to proactively address prejudice and bullying experienced by young people who are LGBT, are thought to be LGBT by others, or have LGBT family members.

We have created a short animation that explains LGBT Inclusive Education. You can view it here.


Why is LGBT Inclusive Education important?

Homophobia is one of the most common forms of prejudice in schools. Research shows that LGBT young people experience high rates of bullying, often with long term effects. This work improves the lives of all young people, as many of those experiencing homophobic bullying are not LGBT.

There are young people in every school who are: openly LGBT; are LGBT but haven’t told anyone yet; will identify as LGBT when they are older; or who have LGBT family members. LGBT Inclusive Education supports schools to proactively address the stereotypes and stigma that can lead to prejudice or bullying of these learners. Through LGBT Inclusive Education, all young people will engage with learning about our diverse society, the importance of being themselves, and that LGBT people are an equal part of our society. This is in line with how many schools are approaching education on topics such as race, disability, sexism and anti-religious prejudice.

Our approach is very effective, as represented in our data from teachers and young people. Visit Our Impact to find out more. As such, LGBT Inclusive Education is important as it represents the most positive and proactive approach to addressing LGBT-related bullying and prejudice in Scotland’s schools.


Is this suitable for all ages of children and young people?

Yes. LGBT Inclusive Education is for all children and young people in Scottish education.

The LGBT Learning Themes have been specifically designed to fit with existing Curriculum for Excellence Experiences and Outcomes and Benchmarks. Content is suitable for the age and stage of learners, so what is taught at primary school is different to secondary.

For example: in P1 this may mean one of the storytime books read throughout the year features a family with same-sex parents, such as ‘And Tango Makes Three’. An explanation of prejudice and discrimination may be introduced in upper primary school. At secondary school, learners will have the opportunity to explore topics in more depth, such as the history of LGBT equality movements.

Teachers should use their own professional judgement, and work alongside their colleagues and school leadership to discuss how LGBT Inclusive Education can be taught at each level to ensure it is suitable for learners at each stage of their education. This is similar to how teachers would approach any other area of the curriculum.

The national CPD facilitates this work and is the national professional learning provided by the Scottish Government. We strongly recommend that teachers begin their engagement with this work by completing this professional learning.

For further information for Parents and Carers, visit Parents and Carers.


Do all schools / teachers need to deliver LGBT Inclusive Education?

Yes. Since 2021, delivering LGBT Inclusive Education is the Scottish Government’s expectation for all local authority run schools and early years settings in Scotland, both denominational and non-denominational. It is also a national expectation that all teachers have completed both stages of the national CPD.

These expectations followed the recommendations made to The Scottish Government in 2018 by a working group of education stakeholders, including TIE, Education Scotland, COSLA, teachers’ unions, the Scottish Catholic Education Service and others.

All LGBT Inclusive Education services are also available for independent schools and we continue to have engagement from the independent sector.


Is there official guidance for LGBT Inclusive Education?

Yes. A joint guidance note from The Scottish Government and COSLA, detailing the national commitment to delivering LGBT Inclusive Education, can be found here. All relevant national guidance is hosted on lgbteducation.scot, the national platform for LGBT Inclusive Education.


What training is available for teachers?

There is a national professional learning available for all teachers in Scotland. For all information and training available to teachers, visit Teachers. Early years practitioners have a professional learning tailored to their setting, which is available here. All of this is provided free of charge.


What resources are available for teachers?

As well as the national CPD, there are several resources available for teachers. There is a Toolkit available for schools as a step by step guide to implementing this area of work in a way that benefits their unique learners and educational setting.

We also have many classroom materials that are publicly available. For more information, visit Our Resources.

Additionally, we provide services directly to schools. Visit Primary Workshops, Assemblies and Secondary Workshops to find out more.


How do I include this in my curriculum area?

The LGBT Learning Themes should be included in ordinary teaching and learning in a natural and meaningful way, remaining relevant to the curriculum area. The best way to learn more about how these can be included in your curriculum area is by completing the national CPD.

For individual classroom materials, we provide resources that are ready to use and can also be easily adapted for the needs of learners. These resources also serve as examples of how LGBT Inclusive Education can look in different curricular areas, ages and stages for teachers who want to produce their own classroom materials.

We are actively working with subject specialists to ensure that all curriculum areas have bespoke resources.

Visit Our Resources page to learn more.


Is this part of Relationships, Sexual Health and Parenthood (RSHP) education?

No. We do not create or publish Relationships, Sexual Health and Parenthood (RSHP) resources. RSHP would ordinarily sit within the Health and Wellbeing curriculum area, with resources created and published by rshp.scot in collaboration with NHS Health Boards and specialists.

Instead, our resources are designed for use across the broader school curriculum, using the LGBT Learning Themes. A breakdown of the themes and some examples of where they fit into the curriculum is available here.


How do I book TIE services?

Booking FAQs can be found here.

More information on each of our services can be found on the following pages:

Primary Workshops


Secondary Workshops




Is there a cost for any of your services or resources?

No, all of our services for teachers, schools, universities and local authorities are delivered free of charge. The only exception to this is our corporate workplace learning.


What should our school be doing about prejudice-based bullying?

Engaging with our LGBT Inclusive Education pathway and professional learning will support teaching staff in schools to proactively address the stereotypes and stigma that can lead to prejudice or bullying of learners. For help with individual cases of prejudice-based bullying and for support on writing your school’s anti bullying policy, visit Scotland’s anti-bullying service RespectMe, which has information for young people, parents and carers about prejudice-based bullying.


Can you help me with a specific young person / my child?

As we are an education charity focused on curriculum, curriculum development and supporting teachers and schools with the National Approach to LGBT Inclusive Education, we do not offer direct pastoral or support services for young people. Our school services enhance the equalities education of young people rather than offering direct pastoral or mental health support. For help in these areas, visit the services signposted below.

For teachers:

Childline is a telephone and online helpline and they can provide support and advice.

Kooth offers free, safe and anonymous mental health support directly to young people. As of 2023, it is commissioned to work with young people in the following local authorities:

Aberdeenshire; Argyll and Bute; Scottish Borders; Clackmannanshire; East Ayrshire; Falkirk; Glasgow City; Highland; Inverclyde; Na h-Eileanan Siar (Western Isles); North Lanarkshire; South Lanarkshire; Stirling

LGBT Youth Scotland run youth groups and can support young people directly.

Switchboard is a dedicated LGBT telephone helpline and they can provide support and advice.


For parents and carers:

Switchboard is a dedicated LGBT telephone helpline and they can provide support and advice.

The Proud Trust has a range of resources for parents and carers related to LGBT identity, coming out, and a live chat option.


Can I use this classroom resource I found online?

Maybe! While there are useful resources available on the internet, we cannot guarantee the quality of the content of any resources not hosted on the national platform. All of Our Resources, as well as those found on lgbteducation.scot are in line with the National Approach and are suitable for use in your classroom.

If you want to use resources from other sources, we strongly recommended completing Stage 1 and Stage 2 of the national CPD. This will develop your professional judgement in assessing the content of resources and materials for use in the context of LGBT Inclusive Education.


My school does LGBT History Month / Pride Month and has an LGBT pupil group. Are we doing this already?

Not necessarily. Using significant LGBT calendar dates as a learning stimulus and having a pupil group for LGBT learners may be beneficial, but these alone are not considered LGBT Inclusive Education.

LGBT Inclusive Education should form part of a curriculum-based approach that spans across the curriculum, across ages and stages, and throughout the school year. Most importantly, LGBT Inclusive Education is for all learners, not only those who are openly LGBT.

Completing Stage 1 and Stage 2 of the national CPD will provide insight into the National Approach towards LGBT Inclusive Education. The national platform lgbteducation.scot also hosts resources and all of the national guidance for this area of work.

We also have service pathways which show the recommended order of engagement for primary and secondary schools, including both our services and progress with the LGBT Inclusive Education Implementation and Evaluation Toolkit. This is designed to achieve meaningful impact in your school and avoid one-off approaches.

For more information about LGBT Inclusive Education in primary schools and to access the primary pathway, visit Primary Overview.

For more information about LGBT Inclusive Education in secondary schools and to access the secondary pathway, visit Secondary Overview.


We have already completed a form of LGBT training, is this a repeat?

No. The national ‘Delivering LGBT Inclusive Education’ CPD represents the National Approach to LGBT Inclusive Education and is not the same as any other LGBT-related training you may have undertaken previously. Completing the national professional learning is a Scottish Government expectation for all teachers. Teachers should complete this professional learning, regardless of any previous training.


As a teacher, how do I communicate this to parents and carers?

Schools can communicate with parents and carers through their regular channels of communication about the introduction and implementation of LGBT Inclusive Education. Engaging with LGBT Inclusive Education is a Scottish Government expectation and a standard part of the curriculum, so schools should feel confident communicating this work. If parents and carers have questions or want to engage with this work, schools should be prepared to share information and support parents and carers to understand the goals of LGBT Inclusive Education and be involved in their child’s learning.

To support you in communicating your LGBT Inclusive Education work to parents and carers, we have created a Parents and Carers leaflet, which is available here. You may also want to direct parents and carers to the Parents and Carers section of our website.

If parents and carers would like to see LGBT Inclusive Education learning resources, our resources are publicly available and can be viewed on Our Resources page.


What is my role as a parent or carer? Can I get involved?

Yes. We have Information for Parents and Carers, as well as a page on how you can Get Involved. In general, schools are happy when parents and carers want to get involved in their child’s learning and will be able to give you information about their curriculum directly.


Get in touch

Do you have a question that hasn’t been addressed in these FAQs? Please get in touch.