Training educators to support sexual minority students: Views of Chinese teachers

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Good quality teacher education and training has been acknowledged as an effective strategy to reduce sexual prejudice against sexual minority (lesbian, gay, bisexual and questioning/queer [LGBQ]) students. However, no mandated programmes have been developed to include LGBQ-related content in teacher training in Hong Kong, a Chinese society in which heterosexism prevails. Based on the concepts of sexual prejudice, minority stress and contact theory, this paper explores the international and regional literature on LGBQ students’ school experiences, highlighting the significant role teachers play in supporting these students to transgress sexual prejudice, and presenting suggested themes and strategies for teacher training programmes, drawn from qualitative interviews with eleven Chinese teacher allies. Data analysis led to the identification of the following themes: 1) starting sexual diversity training officially; 2) reconsidering assumptions; 3) engaging with relevant cultural knowledge and skills; and 4) using dialogue as a training strategy. This paper argues that accurate content about sexual diversity should be incorporated into the professional teacher training curriculum, with updated sexuality concepts and prejudice-free, LGBQ-inclusive language relevant to the Chinese cultural context. Teachers need to become more aware of how sexual prejudice is manifested through cultural forces. Intergroup contact can be included as a useful training strategy. Copyright © 2018 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)346-360
JournalSex Education
Issue number3
Early online dateOct 2018
Publication statusPublished - 2019


Kwok, D. K. (2019). Training educators to support sexual minority students: Views of Chinese teachers. Sex Education, 19(3), 346-360. doi: 10.1080/14681811.2018.1530649


  • Teacher training
  • Sexual prejudice
  • Heterosexism
  • Chinese LGBQ students
  • Tongzhi students
  • Hong Kong


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