Sexual Minority School Psychologists’ Perceptions of School Climate and Professional Commitment
Research has suggested that LGBTQ individuals experience discrimination in their workplace and hostile work climate may affect their job effectiveness, satisfaction, and retention. However, research on LGBTQ educators’ and school staff’s experiences in schools is limited. This study investigated sexual minority school psychologists’ perceptions of their workplace climate and professional commitment. Eighty-eight LGBTQ school psychologists in the United States completed a school climate survey online that asked their experiences regarding homophobia/transphobia in the schools, legal protection of civil rights, school policies of bullying language, and coming out. The results indicated that discriminatory remarks against LGBTQ people are prevalent in the schools. A good number of LGBTQ school psychologists do not feel comfortable being “out” at their schools due to fear that their employment would be at risk if they did so. LGBTQ school psychologists of color, early career LGBTQ school psychologists, and those who work in the rural areas face more challenges in their workplace than their counterparts who are white and work in big or mid-sized cities. The findings highlight the importance of legal protection and school administrative support in creating positive school climate for LGBTQ individuals in schools. Implications are discussed.
KeywordsLGBTQ School psychologist School climate Workplace Professional commitment
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of Interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
The IRB review board at the City University of New York approved this research.
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