EqUal iNclusIon of LGBTIQ stUdents in VET
Discrimination against LGBTQI+ people is a reality, even in countries where LGBTQI+ individuals’ civic rights are well established. Despite the progress that has been made and their legal recognition in all OECD countries, LGBTQI+ people are still far from being offered equal opportunities in education, work or healthcare. They are stigmatized and frequently refused access to normal jobs. The exclusion of LGBTQI+ people from the professional field could be further spiralled by early school drop-out and low performance which is an imminent result of constant bullying and direct discrimination (2015, Overview of Youth Discrimination in the European Union).
Taking those elements into consideration, the project aims at reversing the perceptions and attitudes towards LGBTQI+ learners in VET education. Through the project we are going to “develop and implement innovative methods and practices to foster inclusive education and promote common values”, through the integration of gender-sensitive, gender-transformative and inclusive materials, methodologies, perceptions and attitudes. By training the teachers/tutors on the most modern, up-to-date and innovative educational mechanisms or tools on how to embrace diversity, how to promote equality and non-discrimination and how to normalize different gender approaches.
Funding Programme: Erasmus+ CBHE
Duration: 12/2020 – 11/2022, 24 months
Budget: 499.997 Euro
Countries: Greece, Netherlands, Poland, Cyprus, Bulgaria, Croatia
Objectives of the project
- Provide a renewed skillset to VET teachers with the intention to integrate LGBTIQ-friendly techniques and adjust their courses accordingly
- Highlight the significance of diversifying manuals and educational materials so that they are up-to-date, inclusive and aligned with social reality through the development of innovative courses for VET teachers
- Introduce new training methods which promote the active involvement of VET teachers with the aim to maximize the impact of the project and reach out as many end users as possible
- Reduce school drop-out rates and enhance performance of LGBTIQ young learners while actively engaging them in the VET school environment
- Motivate LGBT people and provide a clear pathway towards employment, based on equal opportunities and evaluation of competences instead of gender identity
- Set up effective monitoring mechanisms to verify change of VET teachers’ perceptions and the impact on LGBTIQ learners
- Raise awareness on LGBTIQ issues, combat stereotypes and stigmatization towards a more inclusive and diversified society
- Promote equality, human rights and EU values to local communities, contributing to mutual respect and understanding on people’s choices away from fear, embarrassment or suppression
- Support local economies with qualified workforce who is now being marginalized and unexploited
Expected Main Results
The results described below derive from all project activities.
- A gender-inclusive Training Curriculum for VET teachers, which will be pilot tested for its relevance and efficiency in addressing the identified needs as described on the TNA
- Diversified manuals and training materials which are up-to-date, gender-sensitive and in line with the social reality, human rights and current trends
- An innovative training strategy which relies on the appointment of Ambassadors to conduct training for VET teacher
- A MOOC platform and an e-portfolio which will be open and accessible by a great number of VET teachers and interested parties across EU.
- A Quality Assurance and Evaluation Mechanism to ensure that the project’s outputs are delivered according to the highest quality standards and the applied processes are in line with the objectives and respect EU regulations
- A deeper understanding on the necessity of adapting the existing courses to represent LGBTIQ identity and reverse discriminatory gender patterns
- An advocacy session aiming at promoting the project’s main results and outputs as well as at raising awareness against discrimination of LGBTIQ people in education
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