Northwest Indiana students stage walkout, say Lowell High School bans LGBTQ+ items in classrooms

Students also said LGBTQ+ students are bullied.

Wednesday, November 16, 2022
Students stage walkout, say Indiana school bans LGBTQ+ items, signs
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Some teens in the LGBTQ+ community say they have been made to feel invisible at Lowell High School in Indiana. Students staged a walkout.

LOWELL, Ind. (WLS) -- Some LGBTQ+ teens say they have been made to feel invisible at their northwest Indiana high school.

They claim Lowell High School prohibits celebration of the LGBTQ+ community in the classroom.

They said items or signs referencing the LGBTQ+ community are not allowed in the classroom.

"Teachers can't have anything in their classrooms. They can't have that this is a safe space. Everybody is welcome here. Nothing," said student Grace Bolda.

A small group of students walked out of school on Tuesday in protest of what they describe as a lack of support for the LGBTQ+ student population.

"I feel like it's important to know you are not alone in the situations and there are people there with you that can help you," said student Liam Baum.

Some students shared that LGBTQ+ students are often bullied at the school.

As ABC7 was preparing to interview one of the demonstrators across from the school, someone from a passing vehicle yelled a homophobic slur.

"It is so hurtful. People come home and hurt themselves because of this stuff," Student Madi Jurs said.

The Tri-Creek School Corporation said in a statement, "there is not a ban on the recognition of the LGBTQ+ community in Tri-Creek schools. Tri-Creek accepts and supports students and employees regardless of race, sex, disability, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, ethnicity, size, age, or national origin."

Parent Tina Habath said all students should feel welcome at school.

"I don't want any student or kid to feel left out or bullied," she said.

The LGBTQ+ students and their allies said they are planning more demonstrations in hopes of making their school and others in the area more inclusive.

"After this walkout, I honestly hope this gets big and we can get some more supporters," Student Gabby Shelton said.