In Research:

Should teachers stay politically neutral?

Should teachers remain neutral, or tell students what they think?
Should teachers remain neutral, or tell students what they think?

So, now that the midterm election is over, should schoolteachers keep their political opinions to themselves?

     For years, many have felt pressured to do exactly that --stay neutral and not let on when they are upset with political leaders. But after evaluating a nationwide questionnaire of more than 700 educators, researchers from Michigan State University say political neutrality isn't necessarily a good teaching tactic.
    In the study, which examined responses to the 2016 presidential election, some teachers said bringing up the subject of elections wasn't appropriate. In other cases, election-related topics weren’t relevant to a particular subject. 
    But lead researcher Alyssa Dunn, assistant professor of teacher education at Michigan State, argues that teachers who attempt to stay neutral aren't neutral. They are maintaining the status quo. "This pressure (to stay neutral) is reflective of the lack of trust, autonomy and professionalism for teachers in our current climate," her study concludes.
    The research is "I Don’t Want to Come Off as Pushing an Agenda: How Contexts Shaped Teachers’ Pedagogy in the Days After the 2016 U.S. Presidential Election," by Alyssa Dunn et al., published in the American Educational Research Journal.

 What happens when school bullies grow up? Another study finds that 1 in 3 lesbian, gay and bisexual individuals bullied at school, grow up to experience similar bullying in the workplace, according to Anglia Ruskin University in England.
     Researchers questioned 400 lesbian, gay and bisexual individuals about their experiences at school and work. The survey, published in the Manchester School journal, found that 35 percent of gay or bisexual men and 29 percent of lesbian women experienced frequent school-age bullying and, later, workplace bullying.
    As bad as it is to deal with workplace bullying, things were worse in school, when 73 percent of gay men said they were either constantly, frequently or sometimes bullied. For lesbian women, nearly 6 out of 10--59 percent--lived with constant, frequent or occasional bullying in school, the university reports. Just 9.9 percent were never bullied.
    The research is "School‐Age Bullying, Workplace Bullying and Job Satisfaction: Experiences of LGB People in Britain," by Nick Drydakis of the Centre for Pluralist Economics, Department of Economics and International Business at Anglia Ruskin University.


     Some schools embrace transgender policies

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