University Of Tasmania

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Multiple dimensions of safe space for LGBTQ students: school staff perceptions

journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-21, 12:48 authored by Kim BeasyKim Beasy, Ruby GrantRuby Grant, Sherridan EmerySherridan Emery
Inclusive school environments have been shown to improve educational outcomes, retention, mental health and overall wellbeing for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning (LGBTQ) students. Anti-bullying approaches have been common strategies used in schools to promote safety for all students, yet a well-established critique among scholars and educators suggests such approaches by themselves are insufficient. Little research exists investigating the spatial aspects of forming LGBTQ-inclusive school cultures. This article reports on an Australian study exploring teachers' and school staff understandings of how space influences inclusion and how they negotiateed or established 'safe spaces' for LGBTQ students. Drawing on the work of Edward Soja, we explored how participants constituted safety in conceived and perceived spaces, and how this informed the ways in which physical environments were established in the lived space to promote inclusion. We reveal the role of physical, discursive and curriculum spaces in everyday schooling activities and practices to promote LGBTQ inclusion.


Publication title

Sex Education






Faculty of Education



Place of publication

United Kingdom

Rights statement

Copyright 2021 Informa UK Limited

Repository Status

  • Restricted

Socio-economic Objectives

Gender aspects in education; Inclusive education