School & District Management News in Brief

Advocate for Gay Students Named to Federal School Safety Office

By Michele McNeil — June 09, 2009 1 min read
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Kevin Jennings, a former history teacher who became a national advocate for gay and lesbian students, has been appointed the assistant deputy secretary for the U.S. Department of Education’s office of safe and drug-free schools.

Mr. Jennings, the founder and former executive director of the Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network, was tapped for the job by Secretary of Education Arne Duncan on May 26. The post does not require Senate confirmation.

In his position at GLSEN, Mr. Jennings worked to make schools safe for students regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. The New York City-based organization organizes an annual “Day of Silence” to bring attention to bullying and harassment of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender students. It also promotes “No Name Calling Week” each January.

Mr. Jennings is the author of six books, including Mama’s Boy and Preacher’s Son: A Memoir, which was named a 2007 Book of Honor by the American Library Association.

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A version of this article appeared in the June 10, 2009 edition of Education Week

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