Exploring perceptions and needs of rural teachers to enhance school psychologists' advocacy and support of gender and sexual minority students

Emily Walsh


Gender and Sexual Minority (GSM) students are at a disproportionate risk for victimization in schools. They are especially vulnerable in schools that lack protective policies, have limited access to resources, and exist within conservative and unaccepting communities. These schools may be more common in rural communities. The purpose of the present study was to explore rural teachers’ perceptions of school climate and their readiness and willingness to support GSM students. Recommendations are provided for school psychologists to be able to understand and address their own schools’ needs in providing a positive school climate for GSM students.