In this edition of GSA Network News, our highlight focuses on our successful Expression Not Suppression Conference
Additionally, we would like to thank the more than 30 supporters that came out this week to support the students of Tomas Rivera Middle School in Perris
who were starting a GSA there in the face of community protests (click to read the article
We especially want to thank Superintendent Dr. Alan Jensen
for his ongoing support of these students and their rights.
Finally, we would like to congratulate the new GSA at Rivera Middle School
, which had its first meeting today!
We encourage all students to stand up for equality and break the silence on April 16 for the Day of Silence
NETWORK NEWS HIGHLIGHT: Central Valley Comes Alive with ENS Pride!
|Central Valley LGBTQ and Ally youth erupted with pride at GSA Network's Expression Not Suppression conference on March 20th in Fresno. The annual Central Valley conference brought together more than 100 youth from all over the Central Valley to engage in youth leadership workshops, education on laws and legal rights, exploring spirituality, and organizing to create safer school climates. The conference is in its sixth year and was put on by GSA Network in collaboration with Community Link, a Fresno area LGBTQ and Ally organization.
This year's keynote speaker was Kip Williams, an organizer with GetEQUAL and key organizer of last year's National Equality March on Washington with Equality Across America. Williams shared with youth what he called his "non-traditional story of coming to activism." For example, "In 2000 I voted for Bush, now I'm working to pass ENDA and repeal Prop 8." Williams' speech explored how students can help move legislation forward, "It is key to know, civil rights have never been handed to us, we have had to fight for them." Williams spoke about the repercussions of Proposition 8's passing, and the new generation of activists who were mobilized.
Afterwards, Williams reflected with us that, "To have the opportunity to speak to youth in Fresno was incredible. The Central Valley is such a vital and important part of the fabric of California. It is a key area where work needs to be done to change hearts and minds. I felt honored to be invited to speak before youth who are doing just that work."
Benji Kahikhina, a senior from small-town Coalinga High School, agreed that it was important to have a conference in the Central Valley "to allow gay youth such as myself to learn more about gay issues and safe schools laws that many teens aren't aware of." He went on to say, "ENS definitely has changed my feelings about being a gay individual. For starters, I'm extremely proud of who I am now. Looking back on my years in high school I was uncomfortable with being gay, and attending ENS has shown me that is is absolutely okay to be who I am and that I should stand proud and fight for my beliefs. I hope all youth can have that experience."
Justin Kamimoto, a junior at Clovis North High School who attended ENS said, "It's important that at the conference everybody accepted LGBTQ individuals and their straight allies because not all the time are we accepted at school. I went to learn things that I can bring back to my Gay-Straight Alliance club at Clovis North High School so we can continue to get more education out there about homophobia and how much it really hurts people."
Workshop topics this year ranged from coming out to how straight allies can help their LGBT friends to knowing your rights. Other workshops focused on learning about opportunities for activism in school and community resources. Most workshops were youth-led. One of the most popular workshops this year was called, "Hello GOD...I'm Gay" which explored issues of spirituality. Also popular was "On these Shoulders We Stand" about GLBT History.
"The workshop that really hit me," said Justin Kamimoto, "was the movie on LGBT history. The movie put me in tears because of how much I learned about LGBT history and what a long fight our community has been in. A lot of people see it as a short-term fight, something that is new or recent. As youth we have to live with homophobic behavior every day. What hit us was seeing how severe it was in history, and that this has been a long-term struggle that was in many ways bigger than us. That was really powerful."
This year's ENS also included a resource faire that included local LGBT community groups, service providers, and ally organizations.
"Having attended conferences and events all over the country," said Danielle Askini, National Program Manager at GSA Network, "The youth in the Central Valley really are some of the most courageous youth I have had the honor to work with. The fact that so many youth attend and that most of the workshops are youth-led is extremely impressive and inspiring. These youth are truly leading the transformation of schools and communities in the Central Valley to create safe atmospheres for LGBTQ and Ally students."
GSA NETWORK ANNOUNCEMENTS
1. Join SoCal GSAs in Breaking the Silence Together!
Come to Pershing Square in Downtown LA and take part in a rally to speak out against homophobia and transphobia in our schools.
Rally will feature youth sharing their stories and experiences dealing with anti-LGBT harassment in schools.
When: Friday, April 16th, 6pm - 7pm
Where: Pershing Square, Corner of 7th and Hill - Off Pershing Square Metro Red Line Station
If you would like to join us as a speaker, or for more info, please contact Daniel Solis (firstname.lastname@example.org or 213.482.4021)
Co-Sponsored by GSA Network, BIENESTAR, & Proyecto Orgullo
2. Clovis West Hosts Central Valley GSA Picnic!
Clovis West and GSA Network invite you to a
Central Valley GSA Picnic!
When: April 24th, 2010
Where: Lake View Shelter at Woodward Park
Time: 1pm to ???
Why: to have fun, make friends, and build community
Please RSVP as soon as possible if you or your entire GSA would like to be apart of the picnic.
If you have any questions at all, please contact me or my club advisor.
cell phone: 559-577-8689
Advisors email: email@example.com
|3. FREE DVDS! It's been a while, but YIM is back in MOTION!
Frameline and GSA Network are proud to announce that due to the renewed support from the ever-generous Bob Ross Foundation we are to keep Youth In Motion moving forward!
First off: We are going to produce more copies of our current DVDs.
If your school didn't get any or all of the DVD series due to short supply, send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org, informing him of which ones your school still needs:
ˇ Gender Matters: Expressions and Identities Beyond the Binary
ˇ Global Currents: Broadcasting Change in Latin America
ˇ In The Family: Marriage Equality and LGBT Families
ˇ Visionaries & Victories: Early Leaders in the LGBT Movement
And the big news: We're creating two brand new DVDs, which will be ready this fall! Stay tuned for more information!
|4. Tru Loved DVD now on Sale! 10% of your purchase goes to GSA Network!
|Own the only movie about forming a Gay-Straight Alliance!
Sixteen-year-old Tru is uprooted by her lesbian moms from her comfortable gay-friendly home in San Francisco and moved to a conservative, suburban community in Southern California.
Tru's only friend is a closeted football player, and even that friendship is jeopardized when she starts the school's first Gay-Straight Alliance.
With: Jane Lynch, Alec Mapa and Nichelle Nichols
BUY TRU LOVED ON DVD TODAY From BROWN BAG PRODUCITONS.
Buy DVDs, T-shirts, and more at www.brownbagprods.com and 10% of the purchase price will support the organizations that support you!!
Buy your DVD from Brown Bag Productions and
be sure to select GSA Network as the beneficiary.
6. GSA Summer Activists Camps! Save the Dates!
|Coming this summer:
the NorCal GSA Activist Camp: August 6-8, 2010
the SoCal/Central Valley GSA Activist Camp: July 23-25, 2010
|GSA Network News is a publication of Gay-Straight Alliance Network. Events, resources, and news items listed under "Other Announcements" are not sponsored or written by GSA Network, and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of GSA Network.
7. GSA voices join in declaring -- Not In Our Town!
|No hate, no fear, no violence - Not In Our Town launches NIOT.orgAdd your story to the website like those from students in the Gunn and Lowell High School GSAs:
On April 6th
, the Not In Our Town project will officially launch NIOT.org - a new way to fight hate and create safe, inclusive communities and schools! Check out the site now in preview at: http://preview.niot.org
GSA Network members are invited to join a powerful, diverse network of people fighting prejudice and hate-based violence targeting people for their sexual orientation, faith, race or ethnicity. Share information about what your GSA is doing locally, and access resources that can help you organize in your community.
To get started now:
|8. Day of Silence: Register NOW for FREE stuff!
What will YOU do to end the silence?
It's time to get ready for the 15th annual Day of Silence, Friday, April 16th.
We expect this year's DOS to be the biggest ever, with hundreds of thousands of students taking a vow of silence to call attention to the silencing effect of anti-LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) bullying and harassment in America's schools.
Here are three things you can do to make your Day of Silence a success:
1. REGISTER and get FREE products! Sign up your Day of Silence activities soon and GLSEN will send you a packet that includes buttons, stickers and more for your DOS activities. But you should hurry, because supplies are limited. Go NOW!
2. Get organizing tools at DayofSilence.org to help make your Day of Silence a success.You can download action tools, sticker templates, banners and buttons for your webpage and more! Check them out.
3. Join the conversation! Lots of people are already talking about Day of Silence onFacebook, MySpace and Twitter. Log in and friend us today!
If you have any questions, need additional support or want to tell us the great things you're doing for Day of Silence, contact us at email@example.com. We love to hear from you.
Best of luck, and happy organizing,
The Community Initiatives Department
|9. We ALL Count -- Queer the Census
|It's crazy - the U.S. Census Bureau wants an accurate count of everyone in the country - but there's no question in the survey that asks if you are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender.
You read that right: LGBT people are basically invisible in the survey that is supposed to reflect the diversity of America's population - and that's a big problem.
The data collected impacts issues critical to every American - like our health care, our economic stability, and even our safety. And when LGBT people aren't counted, then we also don't count when it comes to services, resources ... you name it.
What can you do? Go to http://www.queerthecensus.org/ for more information; talk to your parents, teachers and friends; post it on facebook; write letters; and get the pink sticker to put on the back of your family's census form.
10. Ramble-Ations and workshops at Brava Theater Center
|Written and Performed by D'Lo, Directed by Adelina Anthony
Performance artist D'Lo grew up gay in a Hindu Sri Lankan family in Los Angeles County while immersed in Hip-Hop youth culture. Through humor and colorful characters, Ramble-Ations reflecting upon what it means to be a person of color, to be gay, and to be from an immigrant minority.
Run time: Wednesday, March 17, 2010 at 8:00pm
Through: Tuesday, April 13, 2010 at 10:00pm
Location: Brava Theater Center
Described as a "jolt of creative and comedic energy", D'Lo believes in the power and medicinal value of humor. "Ramble-Ations: A One D'Lo Show" will have you on a roller coaster of emotions with the comedic irony found within the contradictions of life. Known for comedic theater and stand up, D'Lo mixes these styles into the theatrix of this personal story and creates an environment where the audience can collectively laugh at seemingly inappropriate moments. The impersonations hone in on D'Lo's gift to comically assume various characters infused with his political intentions. D'Lo's spin on his political incorrect but well-meaning Amma, his ditsy and rich but ultimately big-hearted cousin, drunk but strangely queer-friendly Gandhi or masculine and sensitive Nic, reconcile ostensibly disparate polarities. They are connected not only to his experiences and questions, but to a community at large. Ramble-Ations comes full circle as theses personalities ultimately check in with each other, with D'Lo and with the viewers.
Writing for Performance March 22 - April 12, 2010. Mondays 7-10pm
Research has shown that public speaking is the #1 fear. The 2nd is death. This concludes that one would prefer to be in the casket at a funeral than delivering a eulogy Jokes aside, people are truly fearful of presenting for the public. This workshops is geared to cultivate an appreciation of the arts, tackle writing or creative blocks, develop skills in public speaking and performing, and nurture environments for artists to listen, give and receive constructive feedback. (weekly: 3/22, 3/29, 4/5, 4/12) , $100 for a 4 week Workshop
Queer Masculinity Workshop March 23-April 13, 2010. Tuesdays 7-10pm,
This workshop is geared specifically for masculine identified women (stud, ag, butch) and transgender/boi/ftm's. The workshop revolves around gender presentation, female masculinity, butch/femme dichotomy, reactions and adoption and adaptation to heterosexuality and hetero masculinity and other breakdowns within gender and sexual orientation. Time will be allotted and structured for solely writing, but a large chunk of time will be set aside to only work on theater arts and readings for the stage. (weekly: 3/23, 3/30. 4/6, 4/13), $100 for 4 week Workshop.
tickets range from $10-25
more info: firstname.lastname@example.org
|11. The Family Acceptance Project is now serving families in Contra Costa
The Family Accpetance Project is the only program of its kind that helps families learn to support their LGBT children. The Family Accpetance Project will work with families from all ehtnic, religious and cultural backgrounds and can meet families in their homes, neighborhoods or at community agencies.
The services are free, confidential and are provided in English, Spanish, and Cantonese.
415-522-5558 or 1-888-354-4222 or write us at
|12. Center Women Present Speak Up! (S.F.)
|Come Join Us on April 10th for a Free spoken word performance by some amazing queer artists.
When: April 10 230-530
Where: LGBT Center, Rainbow Room, 1800 Market St, Sf.
13. Empowering Gay Bisexual and Questioning Men by providing Support,
Advocacy, and a safe place to be YOU! (S.F.)
|Mission Neighborhood Centers, Inc. & Rec Connect present...
AQUELLOS LOCOS -- A Queer Men Group
Where: Jose Coronado Clubhouse (Between 21st & 20th Folsom)
(Inside the Building)
Time: Starts at 6:00pm
When: Every Tuesday
Snacks are provided
For more information Please contact: Jose Romero email@example.com (415) 641-2815
BRINGING QUEER YOUTH SERVICES INTO DA MISSION !!
14. Empowerment: A Panel Discussion Focusing on Youth & Teens of the
LGBTQQI Community and the Issues They Face (Daly City)
"Empowerment" is aimed at uplifting the teens of our community by tackling teen issues.
A facilitator will carry on a guided and informal discussion before an audience and a panel of 8 distinguished guest speakers -- touching on issues like gender identity, depression, dealing with discrimination, and stereotypes.
Local organizations and service providers will also be present to offer information and resources.
FOR PERFORMANCE AND EVENT UPDATES as well as GUEST SPEAKER BIOGRAPHIES, go to www.facebook.com/DCTeenServices
Date: Friday, April 16, 2010
Time: 5:30 - 9:30pm (Discussion Panel @ 6:30pm)
Location: Merced Room, 145 Lake Merced Boulevard, Daly City, CA 94015
Fundraiser: $5-$10 sliding scale (SPECIAL GROUP RATE AVAILABLE. Contact Gabriel Dela Cruz.)
This event is a fundraiser for teen programming in Daly City.
For more information contact:
Gabriel Dela Cruz
Teen Services -
Daly City Parks and Recreation Dept
|15. YouthAware Educational Theatre - The Other Side of the Closet Tour
Touring Northern California schools since 2000, The Other Side of the Closet by Ed Roy supports a safer school curriculum wherein students, teachers, and parents can learn about diversity and acceptance in an innovative and engaging format. Set in and around a high school, this hard-hitting play tells the story of five teens who are grappling with issues of peer pressure, youth violence, homophobia, behavior norms, expectations, discrimination, and identity. http://www.nctcsf.org/other.html . The Other Side of the Closet also educates students and staff about the CA Student Safety Act AB-537, and this is a great performance for your GSA or other diversity based club to sponsor on campus. This program will tour to Northern and Central California middle and high schools Mondays through Thursdays from April 12th - May 7th 2010.
YouthAware touring programs may be presented up to two times a day at your school site in any theater, gymnasium, or other multi-purpose room. We travel with our own set and sound equipment and do not require any special lighting. We prefer to see between 100-500 students per performance. Each 60-70 minute program includes the play and a facilitated post-show discussion with the cast. Pre and post-show handouts are provided for teachers including discussion questions, community resources, etc.
The Other Side of the Closet is approved and sponsored by SFUSD Student Support Services for Grades 7-12. Performances are free of charge for SFUSD. A small donation is requested to cover touring costs for performances outside of San Francisco. YouthAware is part of a non-profit organization, and we do not like to turn away schools for lack of funds, so please contact us to discuss possible underwriting by our YouthAware funders. We have funding in place to bring performances FREE of charge to middle and high schools in the Central Valley in 20010.
The Other Side of the Closet will tour Mondays through Thursdays from April 12th - May 7th 2010.
Contact Sara Staley, YouthAware Program Director, firstname.lastname@example.org (415) 694-6149 with any questions.
To bring The Other Side of the Closet to your school, email your top three choices in dates in order of preference and please let us know if you would prefer one or two performances and what time you'd like the show(s) to start.
Visit the YouthAware homepage: http://www.nctcsf.org/YouthAware.html for more program info and to download scripts for preview.
|16. Youth Calendar (S.F.)
|San Francisco's LYRIC Youth Center hosts events almost everyday for LGBTQQ youth. |
mission is to build community and inspire positive social change
through education enhancement, career trainings, health promotion, and
leadership development with lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer,
and questioning youth, their families, and allies of all races,
classes, genders, and abilities.
Calendar of Events
|17. Trans-E-Motion Meetings in Fresno on Saturdays (Fresno)
| Trans-E-Motion Meetings in Fresno on Saturdays.|
Trans-e-motion has a social meeting on the first Saturday of each
month. Time and location to be
announced. See calendar or call (559)
is a Trans-e-motion
business meeting on the third Saturday of each month at 5:00 p.m. to
p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Equality California office, Van Ness
Towers office Bldg., 1055 N. Van Ness Ave. "C", near Alhambra (South of
California, 93728, U.S.A.
|18. Community Link's Youth Meetings Friday Night (Fresno)|
|19. LGBT Youth Party -- Club Glowstix 2 Friday! (East L.A.)
|SABORES Youth of BIENESTAR cordially invites you, your friends and allies to our upcoming Club Glowstix 2 ! Youth Event to be held at our BIENESTAR East LA location this Friday April 2nd from 6pm to 10pm. 5326 E. Beverly Blvd. Los Angeles, 90022
This is a substance-free event held in a safe-space and confidential environment. We will have free Rapid HIV Testing with a $5 Gift Card as an incentive to encourage our YOUTH to get tested on a regular basis. We will provide snacks and refreshments. This event is targeted for LGBT youth ages 14 to 24.
There will be music, entertainment and A LOT OF FUN! This is a great opportunity for youth to network and to make new friends in a neutral environment.
|20. Rock for Equality, fight discrimination against LGBT Seniors (L.A.)
|Join us on April 11 to End Social Security Discrimination against LGBT Seniors
Every day that we work, we are paying into a Social Security system that denies LGBT seniors vital benefits that are afforded to others. This is Unfair, Unequal, and Un-American. President Obama has declared that LGBT benefits equality is founded in the U.S. Constitution. It is clear, however, this equality will come only when WE DEMAND IT
Join us on Sunday, April 11 for a rally in front of the L.A. Gay and Lesbian Center (1625 N. Schrader Blvd. Los Angeles, CA)
to demand equal benefits for all Americans. 9:30am Sign In and Kick-Off Rally begins at 10:00amMore info: 213 388 ROCK (7625)email@example.com
|21. Southern California LGBTQ YOUTH PROM (L.A.)
|Southern California LGBTQ YOUTH PROM
Save the Date! MAY 14, 2010!
This year's LGBTQ Youth Prom is scheduled for Friday evening, May 14, 2010, from 8 PM to 12 midnight, at the Friendship Auditorium, 3201 Riverside Drive, Los Angeles, CA 90027.
YOUTH, AGES 14 TO 20, ARE INVITED TO ATTEND. Prepay tickets (due no later than Monday, May 10, 2010) for students is $40 per person. Tickets at the door are $50 per person.
Adult Chaperones (adults accompanying youth) must pay the full ticket price of $60 per adult.
*We are looking for individuals and community organizations who would like to sponsor a student ticket (for youth who are unable to pay the student price). The cost of the full ticket is $60.
Contact Friends of Project 10 Inc. at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 626.577.4553 if you or your organization would like to sponsor a young person. This is a tax deductible gift (tax id.#95-4080446).
Visit www.modelsofpride.org/prom to for more info!
|22. OUTspoken Sessions (L.A.)|
an open mic for queer youth and straight allies 19 and under
Every 4th Friday from 6:30-9:30 pm.
2170 W Washington Blvd., 90018
for more info or to reserve your spot email: email@example.com
|23. LGBT Youth Calendars (L.A. and San Diego)|
|Check out these new calendars for LGBT Youth!|
Los Angeles Youth
San Diego Youth
|JOBS, SCHOLARSHIPS, AND GRANTS
24. COLAGE Lee Dubin Memorial Scholarship
|Our difference is our strength!
COLAGE will award four scholarships to youth who have one or more LGBTQ parent/guardian through a fund honoring the memory of community member and gay father Lee Dubin. Each scholarship will provide $1,000 to post-secondary students who have one or more LGBTQ parent/guardian and have demonstrated ability and commitment to effecting change in the LGBTQ community and the community at large.
Deadline: Friday, April 30, 2010
Information & Application:
|25. Scott Hitt Foundation PAID LGBT Internships
The R. Scott Hitt Foundation Internships for 2010
The R. Scott Hitt Foundation is offering funding for qualified candidates with the vision to be future leaders in the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) movement.
The pro-LGBT sponsoring organization that you choose apply with will receive funding to compensate your internship position while you strengthen your resume and gain valuable skills towards becoming a leader of the future.
THE SCOTT HITT INTERNSHIP IN LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT
Application Deadline: May 7, 2010
- Post graduate students with strong academic record
- Duration: 7-9 months, 40 hour week - $20,000 Grant
- Location: An established 501(c)3 nonprofit with a commitment to the advancement of LGBT equality
- Applicant contacts host organization they want to work at and co-develops a successful curriculum encompassing these key elements: communications, fundraising, board development and grassroots policy
- 2-4 recipients per year
* UNDERGRADUATE *
THE A.N.G.L.E. SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA INTERNSHIP
Application Deadline: April 16, 2010
Current undergraduate students with strong academic record
Duration: 8 weeks, 40 hour week - $4000 Grant to sponsor 501(c)3
Location: An established 501(c)3 nonprofit in Southern California with a commitment to the advancement of LGBT equality
Applicant contacts host organization they want to work at and co-develops a successful curriculum encompassing key elements of non-profit operations and program development
Named for the nonprofit ANGLE (Access Now for Gay & Lesbian Equality) which inspired and provided the funding for these internships
3-5 recipients per year
2. Choose a pro-LGBT 501(C)3 non-profit organization to sponsor your internship.
3. Agree to the terms of your internship and scope of work with your sponsoring organization. Construct sponsor agreement in cooperation with your chosen 501(c)3.
4. Submit your cover letter, personal essay, résumé and sponsor agreement by the above deadline to www.scotthittfoundation.org.
|26. Models of Excellence Scholarship
|It's that time, once again, for eligible senior high school students, living in Southern California, to apply for the Models of Excellence Scholarship (MOE).
Awards of $500 and $1,000 are given annually to graduating seniors who have demonstrated a commitment to LGBTQ civil rights issues (i.e., participate in a GSA, school and community activism, school project).
Applications must be submitted no later than May 15, 2010. Winners MUST be present for the awards ceremony which takes place the last weekend of June, 2010 (exact day and time TBA).
Visit www.modelsofpride.org/scholarships for more information and to download an application.
MAY 15, 2010 DEADLINE
|27. NEWS: Gay teen in prom case feels ostracized locally, celebrated nationally
By Jessica Ravitz
March 26, 2010
|(CNN) -- Walking into school Wednesday morning was not easy for Constance McMillen. The last time she'd been there was March 11, the day after her Fulton, Mississippi, high school canceled prom rather than allow her to wear a tuxedo and attend with her girlfriend.
She didn't assume last week's spring break would cool things down. She expected stares, dirty looks and cold shoulders, and passing through the doors was daunting. Over these last two weeks, she said, she's had a hard time sleeping, can barely eat, feels anxious and -- until she saw a doctor for help -- often felt like she was "going to throw up."
"I've been very nervous about all of this," the 18-year-old Itawamba Agricultural High School senior said. "I don't like being somewhere where everyone hates me."
McMillen's name made national headlines when she, with the help of the American Civil Liberties Union, filed suit against her school and the Itawamba County School District, asking them to reinstate prom for everyone, without discrimination. A federal judge in Mississippi ruled Tuesday that while he wouldn't force the school to have a prom, which had originally been scheduled for April 2, he agreed that McMillen's First Amendment rights had been violated.
That was good news, said her attorney, Christine Sun, senior counsel with the ACLU's lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender project. It set a precedent and helped broadcast an important statement, which was made stronger by virtue of where it came from, she said.
"We're in a conservative area of the country, where people tend to think we can do what we like," said Sun, who lives in New York but has traveled multiple times to Mississippi for this legal push. "This case sends a strong message that that's not going to fly anymore."
The only pending issue, Sun said, is the question of damages and the ACLU's request for attorneys' fees. An amended complaint to seek a quick resolution on this should be filed in the next 30 days, she said.
Meantime, McMillen is trying to find her new normal.
In many ways, she stands in an awkward balance. Though there are some people who support her in Fulton (population about 4,000), the overarching tension and what she described as "hostility" that she feels at school and in her community is in deep contrast to the reception and groundswell of support that's overwhelmed her nationally.
As a poster child for the rights of LGBT students, she's been asked to jump on airplanes to appear on news programs and talk shows. The Facebook fan page "Let Constance Take Her Girlfriend to Prom!" had attracted more than 414,000 fans as of Friday morning. Wealthy individuals, including Ellen DeGeneres, have offered to pay for a prom for her school. She's received a $30,000 college scholarship from an anonymous donor and Tonic.com, a digital media company in New York that's also offered her a summer internship. She's even been invited to high school proms in cities she's never visited.
"It means a lot to me," she said of the outreach from others. "The amount of support helps me to continue with the fight."
Read entire story: http://www.cnn.com/2010/LIVING/03/26/constance.mcmillen.tension/
28. NEWS: Gay-straight club sparks protests
By LAURIE LUCAS
March 26, 2010
|Despite the protests of parents alarmed by the impending formation of a Gay-Straight Alliance club at a Mead Valley middle school, administrators said the Val Verde Unified School District won't stand in the way.
"We have an open forum policy," said Mike Bazan, spokesman for the district, which serves portions of Perris, Moreno Valley and unincorporated Riverside County. "Any and all student-run groups can go through the process to be established, but they need an adult sponsor."
The word spread Monday after several students at Tomas Rivera Middle School announced on the site's closed-circuit TV that they were gay or bisexual and wanted to rally classmates to form a Gay-Straight Alliance.
To read the full story, visit: