A discussion on the sexual identity of educators, and its topic in the classroom context, will be led by Professor Catherine Connell of Boston University on Feb. 29 at Winter’s College 283B.
The event, “School’s Out: Is Education “Beyond the Closet”?”, will take place from 2 to 4pm and is presented by York University’s Gay Student Alliance (GSA) and the Graduate Program in Education.
Today’s gay and lesbian educators are often conflicted about how much of their sexual identity is appropriate for the classroom context. Traditional notions of teaching professionalism demand teachers project a sexually neutral self in schools and this goes double for non-heterosexual teachers.
At the same time, the prevailing politics of gay pride encourage being out and proud in all contexts, and teachers are especially called upon to be role models for queer and questioning students. This clash between pride and professionalism significantly influences how gay and lesbian teachers experience their workplaces, communities, identities and lives.
Connell is an assistant professor of sociology at Boston University. Her research and teaching address the intersections of gender, sexuality and occupations/organizations. She is the author of School’s Out: Gay and Lesbian Teachers in the Classroom (UC Press, 2014).
LGBTQ Teacher Panel
A second event highlighting the challenges of LGBTQ educators will take place from 5 to 7:30pm at 280N York Lanes.
The LGBTQ Teacher Panel, also presented by the GSA in the Faculty of Education, will host teachers and administrators as they talk about the challenges and pleasures of being queer at work.
Connell will also be present at this event.