Peebles High achieves silver LGBT charter mark

A group of five adults stand facing the camera holding a certificate

Published: Wednesday, 27th June 2018

Peebles High School is the first school in the Scottish Borders to be awarded the Silver LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender) Charter Mark.

LGBT Charter of Rights

The LGBT Charter of Rights is a list of rights based on the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the child (UNCR) and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) that some LGBT people feel that they are denied due to their sexual orientation or gender identity. Created by a group of LGBT young people and wider stakeholders, the LGBT Charter describes basic rights such as the right to be yourself, the right to privacy, be kept safe from harm and the right to an education, which most people take for granted.

Young people have been at the heart of the work done at Peebles High to challenge discrimination and welcome diversity at the school. They have done this by:

  • setting up the SAGA (Sexuality and Gender Acceptance) peer support group
  • working alongside staff champions to gather evidence of best practice.

Helen Whalley and Mhairi Sinclair were instrumental in setting up the SAGA group and accepted the Silver Mark on behalf of the school. 

Helen Whalley, Peebles High pupil

“For us, gaining this award is more than just a trophy or plaque to put on display. By running SAGA and spreading awareness, we have been able to make a genuine difference around the school.”

Ann Marriot, LGBT Youth Scotland

“I am delighted to congratulate Peebles High School for successfully completing the LGBT Charter of Rights at Silver level. LGBT Youth Scotland and Peebles High School have worked closely together and we have always been impressed with the support and engagement you have offered to LGBTI young people. As a school you have engaged with our national work, and have been ambassadors for taking numerous initiatives forward.”

Shona Haslam, Council Leader

“Congratulations to Peebles High on being the first school in the region to gain this award.  It sets a fantastic example for other schools working towards it.”

More information

Forty guests attended the award ceremony, including young people, school and Council staff (past and present), elected members and representatives from the Parent Council, LGBT Youth Scotland and Peeblesshire Youth Trust. Images are available on Flickr.

All other Borders high schools will be working towards gaining their LGBT Charter over the coming school session.