The BC Government is saying yes to diversity by forcing all school districts to update their anti-bullying policies to include LGBTQ students.

Education Minister, Mike Bernier says there are two many cases in the province where going to school is seen as a negative. “There are some kids who wake up in the morning and are afraid to go to school, and that’s unacceptable. Whether its rumours, gossip, or threats of violence we need to be doing a better job.”

President of the Federation of Independent Schools Association, Doug Lauson says each of their 610,000 deserves a positive environment. “529,000 kids are registered in the public system, 82,000 are with the independent schools, everyone of these students regardless of which school they are at is entitled to be safe.”

All public schools boards are now required to have codes of conduct at their facilities to address bullying while independent schools will include policies of promoting safety, respect and acceptance.

The changes will bring school district policies in line with the BC Human Rights Code amendments made in July.

5% of the student population in BC identify themselves as LGBTQ.