Secondary Schools to Participate in Day of Silence on April 14

For the fifth year, the Gender Sexuality Alliance (GSA) at Weston Middle and High Schools will be running a National Day of Silence, this year on Wednesday, April 14, 2021. The National Day of Silence is a student-led event that has taken place nationwide since 1996, and counts on more than 10,000 participants, who all vow to stay silent for the entire day, or for a part of the day as circumstances dictate.

The event came into being to spread awareness about the effects of homophobic bullying and harassment. Students don’t speak to symbolically represent the silencing of LGBTQ+ voices.

Students at the Middle and High Schoos are not required to participate, and may choose from some options during the day:

  1. Go about their day respectfully speaking as usual.
  2. Wear a sticker that reads “I Support the Silence.”  Then go about their day respectfully speaking as usual.
  3. Wear a lanyard that reads “Participating in Silence.”  They will wear the lanyard around their neck and choose to remain silent for the school day. 

Silence at the start of 1st block (8:30) and ends at the end of the school day (1:00 pm)

For more information about Weston’s GSA and how it is working to create a safe and LGBTQ+_-inclusive school, please see the school website here. Student organizers are the nation’s most powerful base for creating change. Along with providing space to organize, GSAs are spaces where students can receive support, socialize, and find community together. 

GLSEN (Gay Lesbian Straight Education Network) research indicates that students at schools with a GSA were less likely to feel unsafe because of their sexual orientation or gender expression and missed less school than their peers who attended schools without a GSA. LGBTQ+ students with a GSA at their school also reported less anti-LGBTQ discrimination (source: GLSEN). 

*LGBTQ+ stands for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Queer/Questioning

3 comments

  • How are children supposed to learn without speaking? Will the school system also support a day of silence for those supporting conservative positions?

    • I think one day of silence will not prevent learning–in fact, it is huge learning to be silent. Kids, after all, also learn from listening and reading. As for your second question, Mr. Smith, I suggest you have a chat with your school administrator on that one.

  • Perhaps true. But the school system’s calculus would not be the same if the children were opting for silence in support of traditional marriage, for example. Which is hypocritical.

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