GSAs and LGBTQ Clubs
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A Look Back at High School

Public affairs and education intern Alison Geoffrey reflects on her experience in high school.

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If you’re having issues with how your school is treating your club, contact us now for free & confidential help.


Know Your Rights

GSAs Can Make Middle School and High School Better! Need Help? Contact us

  • If you attend a public school or a school that receives any federal funding - which includes many private schools – and if your school allows any non-curricular clubs (a club not associated with a subject taught at your school), you have the right to start a Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) or other LGBTQ club.

Your school cannot prohibit your club just because they fear it may be disruptive

  • Thanks to a law called the Federal Equal Access Act, your school must allow you to form a club with the same rights, privileges and access as any other non-curricular club.

You Have the Right to Form a GSA/LGBTQ Club!

How should your school treat your club?

Launch Infographic

Your school cannot impose rules on your club that aren’t imposed on any other club

  • For instance, your school cannot force you to have a faculty advisor or permission slips if no other club is required to have one

Your school cannot force you to change the name of your club

GSAs/LGBTQ clubs are allowed to choose their own names, and shouldn’t be forced into euphemisms like “The Diversity Club.”

  • Diversity Club
  • Tolerance Club
  • Gay-Straight Alliance ✔
  • Queer Club ✔

Your school must allow your club access to the same facilities as any other club, like:

  • Announcements on the PA
  • Information in the school newspaper
  • Posting flyers on bulletin boards

Check It Out!

Boston Alliance of Gay and Lesbian Youth (BAGLY)

 A youth led, adult supported LGBT youth organization serving the community of Boston, MA.

Rainbow Room at HGLHC

A youth-positive drop in center providing a safe space for LGBTQ teens 13 through seniors in high school to socialize, hang out and support each other.

Boston GLASS

Boston community center serving young people in the LGBTQ community.

More Great Resources →


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