Los Alamos Public Schools’ Healthy Schools Initiative Hosts GLSEN’s Safe Space Initiative.

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Los Alamos Public Schools’ Healthy Schools Initiative Hosts GLSEN’s Safe Space Initiative.

Los Alamos Public Schools’ Healthy Schools Initiative is hosting a community event to learn more about GLSEN’s Safe Space Initiative. GLSEN, which stands for the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network, is the leading national education organization working to create safe schools for ALL students.

The event will be held from 5:30-7:00 p.m. Monday, July 29, at UNM-LA Building 6, Room 631.

GLSEN strives to ensure that each member of every school community is valued and respected regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression.

Havens Levitt, GLSEN Albuquerque Chair, Nationally Certified GLSEN trainer, and retired high school teacher, will lead the presentation. Havens began teaching in 1982 and advocated for LGBTQ+ students during her entire career. She started the first Albuquerque Public School lesbian/gay student support group and is a founding member of GLSEN Albuquerque. For the last six years, the Albuquerque chapter has worked with school districts to improve policies and provide training to educators that will create a more supportive environment for LGBTQ+ students.

The National School Climate Survey and the Youth Risk and Resiliency Survey demonstrate that LGBTQ youth are at higher risk for being the targets of bullying and for struggling with suicidal ideation and problematic substance use. These surveys have consistently indicated that specific school-based supports are related to a safer and more inclusive school climate. 

In order to increase support for all students and especially LGBTQ+ students, families and staff, the LAPS Healthy Schools Initiative is working with GLSEN to start a Safe Space Initiative in the Los Alamos Public Schools. Staff from every LAPS school site have volunteered to be trained as Safe Space Resource People. They will serve as a neutral point of contact and be able to provide information, resources and support in a safe space as needed. 
Parking for Building 6 is located to the west or back of campus. For further information, please contact Healthy Schools Initiative Director Kristine Coblentz at k.coblentz@laschools.net.