SOGI 101

SOGI 101

What is SOGI?

SOGI stands for sexual orientation and gender identity.

The BC Ministry of Education required all schools to reference SOGI in their Code of Conduct by December 31, 2016 after the BC Human Rights Code added gender identity and expression as a prohibited ground for discrimination (sexual orientation was already a prohibited ground).

SOGI’s goal is to send a message of acceptance to welcome students from different family structures, cultures and the LGBTQ+ community.

Schools are responsible for creating a safe, inclusive learning environment for all students. Yet, 64% of LGBTQ+ students feel unsafe at school (Every Class in Every School Final Report, Egale 2011).

The Vancouver School Board statement regarding SOGI is as follows:

“All young people deserve to feel good about themselves. In order for our children and youth to become healthy and happy adults, they need to feel safe, supported and encouraged to be themselves. This can be a challenge for children and youth who are trans and gender diverse, as our society has quite rigid expectations regarding what it means to be either a boy or a girl. Gender diverse children and youth can be more vulnerable to bullying and discrimination in their schools simply for being themselves. As parents and caregivers, it is our responsibility to encourage our children to be themselves. The Vancouver School Board is committed to making schools that are safe an inclusive for all students.”

VSB

SOGI aims to create an inclusive environment by acknowledging the importance of inclusivity through these 10 Key areas.

  1. Common Language
  2. Safety and Anti-Harassment
  3. Self-Identification
  4. Confidentiality
  5. Dress Guidelines
  6. Gender Integrated and Inclusive Activities
  7. Educator Training
  8. Inclusive Learning
  9. Facilities
  10. Inclusive Extra-Curricular Activities

What might my child learn?

Valuing diversity and respecting differences is a part of the BC’s New Curriculum. For young students, that mean seeing themselves reflected in the classroom to develop a sense of belonging. For example, understanding that some kids have a two-parent family with a mom and a dad, other kids might not have a mom or perhaps they have two. Families come in all shapes and sizes. Older students might learn that no student should be limited stereotypes or be teased because of them.

Do you have questions about SOGI or ideas about making the Van Horne PAC more inclusive? Contact Hilary Statton at inclusivity@vanhornepac.com.


Resources for more information:

SOGI Q&A

https://bc.sogieducation.org/q-a/

SOGI 123 Parent Guide https://www.vsb.bc.ca/Student_Support/Safe_Caring/Documents/SOGI%20123_Parent%20Brochure.pdf

Questions and Answers for Parents and Caregivers of Transgender and Gender Diverse Youth

https://www.vsb.bc.ca/Student_Support/Safe_Caring/Documents/QA-Trans-Booklet-English-2017.pdf

Link Q&A for Parents and Caregivers of Transgender and Gender Diverse Youth in Chinese, Filipino, Korean, Punjabi and Vietnamese

https://www.vsb.bc.ca/Student_Support/Safe_Caring/SOGI/Pages/default.aspx

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