Friday, August 28, 2009

New "Thinking Queerly" Curriculum Debuts

To enhance and support local GSAs, Iowa Pride Network’s Regional Gay Straight Alliance Coalitions will begin meeting monthly starting in September. The coalitions reduce isolation that many LGBT students experience, educates students about LGBT history, people and events with our “Thinking Queerly” curriculum (only 16% of LGBT youth ever hear about this information in Iowa schools) and provides a refuge for students in schools who may not have a GSA.

The six coalitions are located in Des Moines, Iowa City, Cedar Falls, Mason City, Sioux City and Council Bluffs. Hundreds of students will utilize the coalitions this year!

The innovative “Thinking Queerly” curriculum used in the coalition meetings is now in its second edition and will be taught by IPN’s trained Leadership Team and Youth Council members. We know that students who are taught the curriculum increase their knowledge by an average of 30%. Last year, LGBT Youth and Mental Health; Future Leaders and Out Professionals; and understanding Power, Privilege and Oppression were rated the highest for knowledge increases.

An exciting development this year is the development of an online request form where individual GSAs can request specific monthly topics and supporting materials from our curriculum as a way to expand this resource at a local level.

This means that by completing a simple request form following a GSA Coalition meeting, GSA leaders can receive an emailed PDF version of that month’s curriculum that they can present partially or entirely to their Gay-Straight Alliance.

This is intended to provide GSAs with an active and accurate meeting agenda to bolster existing programming within the Gay-Straight Alliance. We strongly encourage GSA leaders to create additional and specialized programming to satisfy the unique needs of their school.

If you would like more information about our events, coalitions meetings, or want to start a GSA, please contact Rachel Johnson, Outreach Coordinator at: or by calling: 515-243-1110.

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