Transgender Teachers

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As times are changing, educators are seeing more and more transgender students in their classrooms and communities. These students are often ostracized from social groups and sometimes even their families, however, some transgender students have strong ties with their trans community and even with their friends they have grown up with. Each student situation is unique, which is why these young adolescents need role models in their lives and who better than a transgender teacher.
The Huffington Post’s article explains the hardships and stories of two transgender teachers, Bahar Akurtlu, a second-year Math teacher in Harlem, and Sam Long, an educator in Denver. Both teachers have rather different stories to share, but they share one commonality,
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Some students call her, “Mister” and yell to her that her voice sounds like a man. Unfortunately, Akurtlu refers to these bullying behaviors as “occupational hazards of being a transgender teacher” and she has come to expect this type of treatment from students. While she faces these interactions daily, Akurtlu has taken it upon herself to build relationships with the transgender students in her building and she goes out of her way to check in with students and guides them to resources to keep them healthy and safe. Akurtlu also rejuvenated the Gay Straight Alliance club at her school to help build the community in the school and these students have now taken on the role as her protector as …show more content…
For example, the Equal Protection Clause of the constitution explains that schools have a duty to protect transgender students from harassment on an equal basis with all other students. Clearly, these teachers are ready and willing to stand up for their transgender students in order to protect their rights. From this article, I have learned how important it is for teachers to be vulnerable and to share their individual struggles with their students. Students, especially LGBTQ, need advocates who understand their perspective and who remind others in the community that they are humans just like everyone else. Compassion and caring in education is just as important as the skills and knowledge an educator shares with their student. It was refreshing to read about two teachers who took a risk to connect with and educate the students in their

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