Statement from the Minister for Education: Proud Schools

17 October 2012

The NSW Government takes all forms of bullying most seriously and will take all steps necessary to rid our schools of bullying.

The Coroner has made mention of homophobic bullying in cases of teenage suicide – this should serve as a reminder of the tragic consequences of bullying.

And in the Melbourne Declaration of Education Goals for Young Australians signed by all Australian governments in 2008, NSW committed to an education system free from discrimination including sexual orientation discrimination.

But the material raised in today's Daily Telegraph was prepared by a third party and will not be approved by the Department of Education for use in NSW classrooms.

Proud Schools is a pilot in a small number of schools.  It is not based on the Victorian Safe Schools Coalition.

Proud Schools was initiated by the former Labor Government late in 2010 and I continue to support the initiative.

Proud Schools is a pilot which aims to assist schools to provide a safe and supportive environment for all students.

No teaching and learning curriculum materials have been developed that are specific to the Proud Schools pilot but professional learning is being developed to assist schools to provide a safe and supportive environment for all students.

Schools will not be required to erect a noticeboard specifically for gay, lesbian, transgender and gender questioning young people.

All schools encourage their students to speak to each other and treat each other in a respectful manner.  "Put downs" of any kind are not appropriate.

This Government is committed to stamp out all forms of bullying.

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