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For Paper 2 I am asking you to demonstrate growing competence in objectives, SLOs 1, 2, 3 and 4:

1.Analyze and interpret your educational experiences using sociological perspectives.

2.Critically assess and apply sociological theories and research to contemporary issues in education and schooling.

3.Understand the ethical and social justice implications of sociological work on education.

4.Recognize relationships between education/schooling and constructions of race, gender/sex, and social class

You will choose an educational issue and, drawing from sociological research in class materials AND two sociological journal articles along with reflection on your own experiences and observations, write a critical analysis of that issue incorporating analysis of relevant aspects of race, gender and class. Examples of issues include but are not limited to:  pipeline to prison, bullying, standardized testing, reproduction of inequality, immigration, etc.

PREP: Do a search using the library data program “Sociological Abstracts” to locate two peer reviewed studies on your chosen issue.  In addition, you need to review our related class materials, including your wonderful forums! Take notes and then make the outline from which your paper will flow.

PAPER REQUIREMENTS

Your critical analysis shall center on the issue you choose. Write sociologically and include the following items which shall constitute the rubric I use to assess your papers:

1.Overview of the issue (why/how/for whom is it an issue)

2.Application of relevant theoretical perspectives/concepts on your issue

3.Relevant data from your research and from relevant course readings/films

4.Implications for social justice and equity in education with attention to race, class and gender

5.Proof for spelling and grammar so you don’t lose points. Double space and be sure to number your pages.

Upload your paper as a WORD doc to this assignment page (P2) using this designation for your paper: last name, first initial then P2.  Example:  smith_j_P2

Journal of Youth and Adolescence (2018) 47:1731–1742
https://doi.org/10.1007/s10964-018-0866-x
EMPIRICAL RESEARCH
Safe Schools? Transgender Youth’s School Experiences and
Perceptions of School Climate
Jack K. Day
1
●
Amaya Perez-Brumer2 Stephen T. Russell1,3
●
1234567890();,:
1234567890();,:
Received: 9 November 2017 / Accepted: 11 May 2018 / Published online: 1 June 2018
© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018
Abstract
The magnitude of gender identity-related disparities in school-based outcomes is unknown because of a lack of
representative studies that include measures of gender identity. By utilizing a representative sample generalizable to a
broader population, this study elucidates the size of gender identity-related disparities, independent of sexual orientation, in
school experiences associated with school connectedness and perceptions of school climate. Additionally, the inclusion of
and comparison to results of a large non-representative sample allows for more direct comparisons to previous studies of the
school experiences of transgender youth. The analyses in this study primarily draw on a sample of 31,896 youth
representative of the middle and high school population in California who participated in the 2013–2015 California Student
Survey (a subsample of the California Healthy Kids Survey, which includes the largest known sample of transgender youth).
Over half the sample identified their sex as female (51.3%), and 398 identified as transgender (1.0%). The sample was
racially and ethnically diverse: 30.7% identified as multiracial, 33.0% as White, 11.1% as Asian, 7.4% as Black, and 52.9%
as Hispanic. Findings from multilevel analyses show that relative to non-transgender youth, transgender youth were more
likely to be truant from school, to experience victimization and bias-based bullying, and to report more negative perceptions
of school climate, though did not differ in self-reported grades. The findings have implications for improving school policies
and practices to create safer and more supportive school climates for all youth.
Keywords
Gender identity Truancy Victimization Bias-based bullying Academic achievement
●
●
●
Introduction
The wellbeing of transgender youth has been the focus of
considerable public attention, especially within school settings. Recent studies document large disparities in health
behaviors for transgender youth compared to their nontransgender peers (Guss et al. 2017; Reisner et al. 2015;
Reisner et al. 2015). Yet, transgender youth are currently
under-represented in the education literature, especially as a
* Jack K. Day
jack.day@oneonta.edu
1
Department of Human Ecology, SUNY Oneonta, 108 Ravine
Parkway, Oneonta, NY 13820, USA
2
Department of Sociomedical Sciences, Mailman School of Public
Health, Columbia University, 722 West 168th Street, New York,
NY 10032, USA
3
Department of Human Development and Family Sciences,
Population Research Center, University of Texas at Austin, 116
Inner Campus Dr., Stop G6000, Austin, TX 78712, USA
●
group distinct from sexual minority youth—that is, youth
who identify as lesbian, gay, and bisexual, who engage in
same-sex behaviors, and/or who report same-sex attractions
(McGuire et al. 2010; Russell and Fish 2016). Although
existing research documents persistently hostile school climates for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer/
questioning (LGBTQ) youth as a group (e.g., Kosciw et al.
2016; Russell et al. 2012; Toomey and Russell 2016), little
is known about the school experiences and perceptions of
school climate unique to transgender youth (Saewyc and
Homma 2017).
Studies consistently reveal disparities in academic and
health outcomes associated with negative school climates
for LGBTQ youth compared to their non-LGBTQ peers
(Kosciw et al. 2016; McGuire et al. 2010). Discrimination
and victimization in schools are associated with higher
depression, self-harm, and suicidal ideation for LGBT youth
compared to their non-LGBT peers (Almeida et al. 2009).
The available evidence about transgender youth points to an
alarmingly high prevalence of mental health disorders
(Grossman et al. 2011; Olson-Kennedy 2016; Reisner et al.
1732
2015; Russell and Fish 2016), substance use (Newcomb
et al. 2014; Rowe et al. 2015), and self-harm (Mustanski
et al. 2010; Olson et al. 2015). Two recent studies, based on
data from the California Healthy Kids Survey and Biennial
California Student Survey, found that transgender youth
were more likely to have suicidal thoughts (Perez-Brumer
et al. 2017) and engage in substance use (Day et al. 2017)
than their non-transgender peers. Importantly, experiences
of bullying and harassment substantially moderated the
relationship between gender identity and both suicidality
(Perez-Brumer et al. 2017) and substance use (Day et al.
2017). The research on transgender youth’s school experiences, such as victimization and bias-based bullying, school
absenteeism, and academic outcomes, may illuminate key
mechanisms driving compromised health for transgender
youth. Yet, available data is limited because most studies
typically do not distinguish between sexual and gender
minority youth.
To address this gap in the literature, this study examines
disparities between transgender and non-transgender
youth’s school experiences and perceptions of school climate with data from a large and diverse sample of students
in California, as well as a smaller subsample that is representative of California schools. This study includes the first
known representative sample to include a measure of gender
identity among youth, offering insight into the school
experiences of a diverse group of transgender youth.
Transgender Youth School Experiences
The National Crime Survey, a representative school-based
sample, revealed that 22% of all youth aged 12 through 18
reported being bullied while at school (Lessne and Cidade
2015). A national study of LGBTQ youth (Kosciw et al.
2016) underscores that schools are particularly unsafe for
transgender youth: 75% of transgender youth felt unsafe at
school because of their gender expression, compared to
32% of cisgender males and 23% of cisgender females.
Transgender youth also reported feeling unsafe in multiple
spaces within schools, such as bathrooms, locker rooms,
and gym/PE class (Kosciw et al. 2016). Additionally,
compared to non-LGBTQ youth, LGBTQ youth were more
than twice as likely to report missing school in the past
month due to safety concerns (36.6% versus 14.7%)
(Greytak et al. 2016); however, this study did not distinguish between LGB and transgender youth.
A growing body of research also documents that transgender youth experience pervasive victimization, bias-based
harassment, and bullying based on their gender identity
(e.g., Grossman et al. 2009; Kosciw et al. 2016; Kosciw
et al. 2009; McGuire et al. 2010), even in schools that are
rated as generally safe for gender-nonconforming youth by
other peers (Toomey et al. 2012). These disparities in
Journal of Youth and Adolescence (2018) 47:1731–1742
victimization are particularly concerning because youth
who experience discriminatory bullying and victimization
have higher rates of depression (Russell et al. 2011; Toomey et al. 2010), higher rates of absenteeism and truancy
(Birkett et al. 2009), and lower academic achievement (e.g.,
lower grade point averages, less likely to plan to pursue
postsecondary education) (Kosciw et al. 2016) compared
with youth who have not experienced discriminatory
bullying.
Most of what is currently known about school experiences among transgender youth is based on studies with
small samples, qualitative studies, or surveys administered
online. While these approaches offer valuable insights into
the lives of transgender youth, there have been no studies
that use typical school-based data collection approaches to
assess representative samples of transgender youth in the U.
S. (Saewyc and Homma 2017; Toomey and Russell 2016),
which is needed to more accurately identify the magnitude
of gender identity-related disparities and to generalize
findings.
Negative School Experiences: Consequences and
Protective Factors
Existing research has primarily focused on the deleterious
consequences of bullying and harassment, regardless of
gender identity, for school connectedness—a key indicator
of school climate. School connectedness is related to
meaningful engagement in activities and development of
caring relationships in school (Greytak et al. 2009), higher
academic achievement (Blum 2005), and protects against
suicidal ideation among LGBT youth (Diaz et al. 2010;
Whitaker et al. 2016).
LGBT youth who have experienced bias-based bullying
have lower perceptions that adults care about them as
individuals, and about their academic success (Diaz et al.
2010), than those who have not experienced bias-based
bullying. In a qualitative study conducted by McGuire et al.
(2010), transgender youth reiterate that peer harassment is
pervasive for transgender students. However, transgender
youth in schools where teachers and school personnel
intervened reported lower rates of victimization. Youth also
recounted feeling greater school connection and safety
when teachers and officials actively took measures to prevent bullying situations and implemented policies inclusive
of LGBT youth (McGuire et al. 2010).
Although little research has been conducted with a focus
specifically on transgender youth, the available literature
identifies aspects of school climate, such as having supportive relationships at school, that buffer against the
negative associations between school victimization, academic achievement, and health. To date, no known studies
have investigated school climate from the perspective of
16.70%
Missed school
Depressed
12.45%
47.64%
4.55 (2.05)
−.30 (.74)
SOG-bullying
Self-reported grades
Perception of school climate
30,892
31,676
31,833
6.01 [4.52–7.99]***
30,995
30,939
31,870
31,363
31,862
31,870
31,856
31,672
31,380
31,506
31,896
31,896
31,709
31,896
31,896
31,896
−.37 (.11)***
−.30 (.05)***
7.91 [6.29–9.96]***
6.20 [4.87–7.89]***
2.23 [1.17–4.25]***
1.50 (.13)***
5.92 [3.58–9.81]***
6.41 [4.12–9.97]***
1.98 [1.42–2.76]***
1.22 [0.92–1.63]
1.82 [1.45–2.27]***
1.02 [0.76–1.40]
.82 [0.64–1.05]
1.24 [0.91–1.70]
.88 [0.66–1.20]
.97 [0.76–1.23]
1.02 [0.81–1.31]
.66 [0.45–0.96]*
.64 [0.28–1.44]
.94 [0.71–1.24]
.56 [0.38–0.84]**
1.98 [1.36–2.87]***
1.52 [0.91–2.55]
9.79 [7.70–12.46]***
1.43 [1.14–1.78]**
.15 [0.12–0.19]***
18.34 [11.96–28.13]***
—
4.50 (2.07)
−.33 (.75)
45.97%
39.13%
34.46%
3.75%
3.68 (3.13)
6.10%
9.05%
16.70%
19.57%
53.01%
13.37%
35.69%
16.42%
14.95%
48.79%
34.32%
10.14%
3.10%
26.22%
11.21%
9.53%
5.48%
36.48%
61.86%
42.43%
49.82%
1.15%
4.91 (1.78)
−.002 (.64)
12.65%
8.32%
7.47%
1.34%
2.11 (2.33)
1.40%
1.45%
8.93%
20.27%
37.55%
12.36%
36.84%
14.33%
16.20%
51.85%
35.89%
15.35%
2.06%
26.29%
11.96%
4.60%
3.85%
6.02%
49.16%
75.88%
4.59%
98.85%
Non-transgender
%/Mean (SD)
−.41 (.02)***
−.30 (.01)***
5.95 [5.70–6.20]***
7.25 [6.94–7.58]***
6.47 [6.18–6.77]***
2.94 [2.64–3.29]***
1.59 (.02)***
4.49 [4.11–4.91]***
6.26 [5.80–6.75]***
1.91 [1.81–2.02]***
1.22 [1.16–1.27]
1.84 [1.76–1.92]***
1.07 [1.01–1.13]*
.85 [.82–.89]*
1.15 [1.09–1.22]***
.88 [0.84–0.94]***
.94 [0.90–1.00]
.95 [0.91–0.99]*
.62 [0.58–0.67]***
1.53 [1.36–1.72]***
.99 [0.94–1.04]
.87 [0.81–0.94]***
2.32 [2.16–2.48]***
1.43 [1.34–1.60]***
2.33 [2.28–2.37]***
1.67 [1.59–1.73]***
.20 [0.19–0.21]***
20.64 [19.77–21.55]***
—
OR [95% CI]/b (s.e)
788,680
793,231
751,828
756,013
755,523
803,911
768,374
803,329
803,892
803,226
787,914
777,572
783,066
681,569
804,595
777,015
804,595
804,595
804,595
n
***p ≤ .001
**p ≤ .01
*p ≤ .05
Note. Heterosexual, LGB, and unsure were dichotomous variables; self-reported grades was a scale variable (0 = Mostly F’s; 7 = Mostly A’s); truant was a dichotomous variable (0 = never; 1 = 1
or more times); SOG-bullying was a dichotomous item of having been bullied because of perceived or actual sexual orientation (homophobic bullying) and/or gender (0 = Never; 1 = 1 or more
times); general victimization was a 9-item summary variable (0 = no victimization; 9 = high victimization); perception of school climate was a standardized scale variable (−2.35 = most
negative; 1.57 = most positive)
4.87 (1.77)
.01 (.64)
8.17%
7.11%
42.48%
33.86%
Homophobic bullying
Gender-based bullying
1.58%
2.21 (2.35)
3.33%
3.78 (3.16)
1.11%
1.33%
8.81%
19.88t%
35.62%
13.88%
35.09%
13.74%
17.41%
56.30%
32.17%
14.43%
1.89%
28.65%
11.78%
7.92%
3.15%
5.98%
48.64%
80.36%
4.70%
99.00%
Suspended
General victimization
5.64%
8.43%
18.98%
53.29%
Don’t know
Truant
14.17%
35.18%
54.60%
Hispanic
Parental education
Some college
College graduate
30.82%
9.89%
Multiple races
No race reported
17.20%
14.48%
1.71%
28.83%
Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander
White
Did not finish high school
High school graduate
9.93%
13.88%
4.94%
Race/ethnicity
American Indian/Alaskan Native
Asian
Black/African American
31.81%
58.29%
39.81%
48.43%
Heterosexual
LGB
Unsure
Sex (male)
1.00%
Gender identity
Sexual orientation
Felt unsafe
Alcohol/drugs
n
Transgender
%/Mean (SD)
OR [95% CI]/b (s.e)
Transgender
%/Mean (SE)
Non-transgender
%/Mean (SE)
CHKS
CSS
Table 1 Sample characteristics for the representative subsample (CSS) and full sample (CHKS)
Journal of Youth and Adolescence (2018) 47:1731–1742
1733
1734
transgender youth independent from LGB youth using a
representative sample that includes a measure of gender
identity. Assessing disparities in perceptions of school climate based on gender identity is critical for identifying
potential mechanisms for improving school climates for all
youth.
Current Study
The available evidence suggests that transgender youth are
at greater risk for experiencing hostile school climates
relative to their non-transgender peers. However, knowledge about the size of disparities is limited by the lack of
representative datasets that include items assessing sexual
orientation and gender identity. This study uses a large
school-based sample and a smaller weighted representative
subsample to address two research questions. First, what are
the size of gender identity-related disparities in school
experiences (i.e., absenteeism, victimization and harassment, and academic success) and perceptions of school
climate (Research Question 1)? This is the first study, to our
knowledge, of transgender youth in school contexts generalizable to a broader population. This study also examines
specific reasons youth are truant from school, and distinguishes between sexual orientation and gender identity,
further elucidating factors that thwart school connectedness
for transgender youth.
Second, do results from a large non-representative sample differ substantially from a smaller representative (i.e.,
weighted) subsample (Research Question 2)? Descriptive
data from the full sample are presented as a basis for
comparison to prior studies of transgender youth’s experiences at school (all of which have been based on nonrepresentative samples, and which often conflate sexual
orientation and gender identity). The full sample also serves
as a point of comparison to the smaller subsample that is
representative of the California student population. By
comparing findings on school experiences of transgender
and non-transgender youth, such as victimization and biasbased bullying, absenteeism, and academic success, this
study allows for a more direct comparison to findings of
previous studies.
Method
Journal of Youth and Adolescence (2018) 47:1731–1742
representative of the Californian student population in
grades 7, 9, and 11 (the statewide California Student Survey
[CSS]; n = 35,849). Conducted biennially, the CHKS is
administered by WestEd with support from the California
Department of Education to track health risks and resilience
among youth in California (Austin et al. 2015a). Every
survey cycle, WestEd randomly selects a smaller subset of
schools, a priori, whose data are weighted to be representative of the student population of California (CSS).
In accordance with Education Code 501938(b), and with
school board policy, passive consent was used for administration of the surveys. Parents or guardians were notified,
in writing, at the beginning of the school year about the
survey, and given the opportunity to review the survey and
decline their child’s participation. Completion of the survey
takes about 50 minutes. Prior to administration of the survey, schools and staff are provided training to standardize
implementation (WestEd, n.d.-a). Participation in the CHKS
was voluntary, and rates of participation vary within and
between schools, with some schools opting not to participate (WestEd, n.d.-b). Response rates for the CSS in
2013–2015 were 71%.
Exclusion Criteria
Based on recommendations from WestEd, youth whose
response validity was questionable based on meeting two or
more criteria related to inconsistent responses (e.g.,
responding that they never used a drug, but reporting drug
use in the past 30 days), exaggerated drug use, using a fake
drug, and answering dishonestly to all or most of the
questions on the survey were excluded from analyses
(Austin et al. 2015b). Excluded youth based on these criteria constituted 1.68% of the CHKS and 1.38% of the CSS
sample. Additionally, youth in schools that did not administer the measure of sexual orientation and gender identity
(SOGI) were excluded from analyses (6.15% of the CHKS
sample [n = 52,908]; 11.03% of the CSS sample [n =
3,953]). The final analytic sample includes 806,918 youth
from the CHKS and 31,896 youth from the CSS. Comparative analyses between youth included and excluded
from the analytic sample reveal that youth in the excluded
sample were more likely to identify as transgender, LGB,
unsure, and White, and less likely to identify as Hispanic.
These findings were observed in both the CSS and CHKS,
except exclusion from the sample was unrelated to Hispanic
identity in the CHKS.
Sample
Sample Characteristics
The sample for this study was derived from cross-sectional
data from public schools that administered the 2013–2015
California Healthy Kids Survey (CHKS; n = 874,483), and
a weighted subsample of the CHKS designed to be
Table 1 provides sample demographics for both the CHKS
and CSS stratified by gender identity. In the CHKS, the
sample included 9,281 (1.2%) transgender youth.
Journal of Youth and Adolescence (2018) 47:1731–1742
Regarding sexual orientation, 5.1% identified as LGB and
6.4% as unsure. Of the 9,281 youth who identified as
transgender, 49.8% identified as LGB. Just over half the
youth identified as female (50.2%), and the sample was
racially and ethnically diverse: 35.9% identified as multiracial, 26.4% White, 11.9% as Asian, 4.7% as Black/African American, 3.9% as American Indian/Alaska Native,
2.1% as Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander, and 15.3% did
not report their race; 50.9% of the youth identified as Hispanic. The age of participants ranged from 10 to 18 years;
the mean age of the sample was 14.47 (SD = 1.81) years.
The weighted subsample (CSS) included 398 (1.0%)
transgender youth. Regarding sexual orientation, 5.1%
identified as LGB and 6.2% as unsure. Of the 398 youth
who identified as transgender, 48.4% identified as LGB.
Similar to the CHKS sample, 51.3% of the youth in the CSS
identified as female. Regarding race and ethnicity: 30.7%
identified as multiracial, 33.0% as White, 11.1% as Asian,
7.4% as Black/African American, 3.0% as American
Indian/Alaska Native, 1.8% as Native Hawaiian/Pacific
Islander, and 13.1% did not report their race; 52.9% of the
representative subsample also identified as Hispanic. The
mean age of the sample was 14.41 (SD = 1.73) years.
Measures
Gender Identity
Gender identity was assessed as a single item: “Which of the
following best describes you? (Mark all that apply): (a) Heterosexual (straight); (b) Gay or Lesbian or Bisexual;
(c) Transgender; (d) Not sure; (e) Decline to respond.” Cases
were coded 1 if youth marked that they were transgender (0 =
non-transgender; 1 = transgender). We use “non-transgender”
to refer to youth who did not identify as transgender.
Truancy and Missing School
To assess truancy, responses to the question “During the
past 12 months, about how many times did you skip school
or cut classes?” (0 = 0 times; 6 = more than once a week)
were dichotomized (0 = never truant; 1 = truant in the last
12 months). Youth were also asked to report on reasons for
missing school: “In the past 30 days, did you miss school
for any of the following reasons? (mark all that apply)” (0
= no; 1 = yes). Response categories included: “Felt very
sad, hopeless, anxious, stressed, or angry” (missed school:
depressed); “Didn’t feel safe at school” (missed school:
unsafe); “Wanted to use alcohol or drugs” (missed school:
alcohol/drugs); “Were suspended” (missed school: suspended). Dichotomous variables were created for each
response category.
1735
General Victimization
A single measure of victimization was constructed using
youth reports on 9 items (α = .82) related to physical and
verbal assault and harassment on school property (Felix et al.
2009; Felix and You 2011; Gilreath et al. 2014). Youth were
asked, “During the past 12 months, how many times on
school property have you” (0 = 0 times; 3 = 4 or more
times): (1) “been pushed, shoved, slapped, hit, or kicked by
someone who wasn’t just kidding around;” (2) “been afraid
of being beaten up;” (3) “had mean rumors or lies spread;”
(4) “had sexual jokes, comments, or gestures made to you;”
(5) “been made fun of because of your looks or the way you
talk;” (6) “had your property stolen or deliberately damaged,
such as your car, clothing, or books;” (7) “been threatened or
injured with a weapon (gun, knife, club, etc.);” (8) “been
threatened with harm or injury;” (9) “been made fun of,
insulted, or called names.” Items were dichotomized and
summed (0 = no victimization; 9 = high victimization).
Sexual Orientation and Gender-Based Bullying
Youth were asked their experiences of being harassed or
bullied on school property during the past 12 months: (1)
“because you are gay or lesbian, or someone thought you
were” (homophobic bullying); and (2) “because of your
gender” (gender-based bullying). The survey defined bullying as being “repeatedly shoved, hit, threatened, called
mean names, teased in a way you didn’t like, or had other
unpleasant things done to you. It is not bullying when
students of about the same strength quarrel or fight.” Youth
were given four response options ranging from “0 times” to
“4 or more times.” Responses for homophobic bullying and
gender-based bullying were dichotomized. Additionally, a
single measure of sexual orientation and gender (SOG)
bullying was created (0 = did not experience homophobic
or gender-based bullying; 1 = experienced homophobic
and/or gender-based bullying; tetrachoric correlation = .65).
Self-Reported Grades
Youth were asked, “During the past 12 months, how would
you describe the grades you mostly received in school?”
The item was reverse coded so responses ranged from
lowest (0 = mostly F’s) to highest (7 = mostly A’s).
School Climate
A summary variable was created based on the average for
each student across 14 items related to school climate (α
= .89). Specifically, the CHKS and CSS assess developmental supports within schools related to positive academic,
social-emotional, and health related outcomes (Austin et al.
1736
2016), such as: “At school, I help decide things like class
activities or rules;” “At my school, there is a teacher or
some other adult who always wants me to do my best;” “At
my school, there is a teacher or some other adult who really
cares about me;” and “I feel close to people at this school.”
Because the items included in the measure of school climate
were on different scales, each item was standardized using
z-scores (ranging from −2.35 to 1.57).
Covariates
Demographic characteristics were accounted for through the
inclusion of the following covariates: (1) age; (2) race and
ethnicity; (3) sex (0 = female, 1 = male); (4) parental education (“What is the highest level of education your parents
completed? [Mark the educational level of the parent who
went the furthest in school]”) as a proxy for socioeconomic
status, and (5) sexual orientation. For sexual orientation,
each response was dichotomized to the item detailed above:
“heterosexual” (0 = non-heterosexual; 1 = heterosexual);
“LGB” (0 = non-LGB; 1 = LGB); “unsure” (0 = nonunsure; 1 = unsure). Youth could select multiple responses
(e.g., youth who indicated they were heterosexual and LGB
were coded as a 1 for both “heterosexual” and “LGB”).
Analytic Plan
To identify disparities in school experiences and perceptions
of school climate between transgender youth compared to
non-transgender youth, multilevel regressions and logistic
regressions were estimated for continuous and dichotomous
outcomes, respectively, using Stata 14 (StataCorp 2015).
Complete case analyses resulted in a loss of up to 24% of the
CHKS sample and 18% of the CSS sample. Multiple imputation using chained equations (10 iterations seeded at 53,421)
was therefore used to account for missing data (Enders 2010).
All variables in the models were included in the imputations.
Unconditional models were tested to assess the bivariate
associations between gender identity and school measures for
the full sample (CHKS) and the representative weighted
subsample (CSS). Subsequently, models were adjusted to
account for demographic characteristics. Only results from the
CSS are presented, except where there are notable divergences from the CHKS (see Table 2; table of results for
CHKS multivariate analyses are available upon request).
Results
Descriptive Analyses
Bivariate comparisons between transgender and nontransgender youth for demographic characteristics and
Journal of Youth and Adolescence (2018) 47:1731–1742
school experiences are presented in Table 1. In the representative subsample (CSS), transgender youth had 18 times
higher odds of identifying as LGB, and 10 times higher
odds of identifying as unsure, compared to non-transgender
youth. Compared to their non-transgender peers, transgender youth were less likely to identify as Asian and more
likely to identify as Black or African American. All
bivariate comparisons based on gender identity were significant among the full unweighted sample (CHKS).
Regarding school experiences, bivariate analyses reveal
similar patterns in the CHKS and CSS samples. Compared
to non-transgender youth, transgender youth had: (1) nearly
two times higher odds of being truant from school, missing
school because they felt depressed, or missing school
because they were suspended; and (2) six times greater odds
of missing school because they felt unsafe or to engage in
substance use. Transgender youth also experienced more
general victimization than non-transgender youth. Models
for homophobic bullying and gender-based bullying independently, and with the combined measure of SOG-bullying, were tested to examine the risk of bias-based bullying
relative to youth’s gender identity. Transgender youth had
six times greater odds of experiencing gender-based bullying, eight times greater odds of experiencing homophobic
bullying, and six times greater odds of experiencing genderbased and/or homophobic bullying (i.e. SOG-bullying).
Transgender youth also had lower self-reported grades and
more negative perceptions of school climate than nontransgender youth.
Multivariate Analyses
The substantive findings from the CSS largely remain
unchanged in multivariate analyses accounting for demographic characteristics (see Table 2). Specifically, compared
to non-transgender youth, transgender youth had higher
odds of school absenteeism: truancy (AOR = 1.53, 95% CI
[1.21–1.93]), feeling unsafe (AOR = 3.33, 95% CI
[1.91–5.80]), and skipping school to use alcohol or drugs
(AOR = 3.23, 95% CI [1.90–5.51]). Transgender youth did
not differ from their non-transgender peers in school
absenteeism related to feeling depressed or because they
were suspended (notably, gender identity was significantly
associated with these outcomes in the full unweighted
sample). Transgender youth experienced more general victimization (b = .86, p < .001), and had over three times higher odds of experiencing gender-based bullying (AOR = 3.71, 95% CI [2.42–5.68]) and two times higher odds of homophobic bullying (AOR = 2.27, 95% CI [1.22–4.25]), compared to non-transgender youth. Regarding the combined measure of gender-based and homophobic bullying, transgender youth had over 2 times higher odds of experiencing SOG-bullying (AOR = 2.34, 95% CI [1.35–4.07]). 1.26** 1.04 1.32*** 1.02 1.72*** .86*** 1.20*** 1.22 (.06)*** −.16 (.01)*** −.25 (.03)*** Age Sex (male) 13.01*** 2.27*** .32 (.06)*** .86 (.13)*** LGB .75*** −.29 (.05)*** .08 (.06) .33 (.09)*** .14 (.04)*** Asian Black/African American Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander Multiple (two or more races) 1.07 1.39* 1.08 .94 .02 (.08) American Indian/Alaska Native Race/Ethnicity [1.10–1.44] [0.91–1.21] [1.17–1.49] [0.89–1.16] [0.88–1.47] [0.43–0.68] [0.71–1.12] [0.67–1.13] [0.96–1.32] [0.64–0.95] [0.82–1.05] [0.92–1.24] [1.01–1.91] [0.89–1.32] [0.64–0.89] [0.74–1.91] [1.07–1.34] [0.81–0.91] [1.41–2.10] [11.33–14.93] [1.22–4.25] 95% CI OR [1.23–1.45] [1.08–1.25] [1.13–1.31] [0.99–1.15] 1.34*** 1.17*** 1.22*** 1.07 1.14 .54*** .89 .87 1.13 .78* .93 [2.50–3.24] [1.11–1.56] [1.14–1.24] [0.35–0.43] b (SE) [0.98–1.31] [0.64–0.77] [0.89–1.12] [0.77–1.06] [1.01–1.17] [0.86–1.03] [1.07–1.22] 1.14 .70*** 1.00 .90 1.09* .94 1.15** 2.85*** 1.31** 1.19*** .39*** [0.79–1.87] Homophobic bullying [1.34–1.64] [0.95–1.18] [1.28–1.34] [0.82–0.90] 1.48*** 1.06 1.31*** .86*** 1.22 General victimization [1.21–1.93] 1.53*** Unsure Sexual orientation Gender identity (transgender) Gender identity (transgender) Sexual orientation LGB Unsure Age Sex (male) Race/Ethnicity American Indian/Alaska Native Asian Black/African American Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander Multiple (two or more races) No race reported Hispanic Parental education Did not finish high school High school graduate Some college Don’t know 95% CI OR OR 95% CI Missed school: Depressed Truant 1.03 1.61*** 1.06 .77* 1.21 .52*** .96 1.81*** 2.87*** 3.71*** OR [0.87–1.22] [1.30–1.99] [0.82–1.36] [0.61–0.97] [0.88–1.66] [0.45–0.60] [0.91–1.01] [1.52–2.15] [2.38–3.47] [2.42–5.68] 95% CI 1.68* 1.06 1.38 1.35 1.37 .65 1.74* 1.00 1.02 .70 1.60** 3.03*** 1.20 1.41*** 1.36* 3.23*** OR 1.03 1.57*** 1.04 .72*** 1.03 .77*** .91*** 1.76*** 7.85*** 2.34** OR [0.90–1.19] [1.26–1.95] [0.85–1.26] [0.60–0.85] [0.81–1.31] [0.70–0.85] [0.87–0.95] [1.48–2.08] [6.89–8.94] [1.35–4.07] 95% CI 1.48* 1.36 1.30 1.45* 1.92* .53 3.75*** 1.18 1.46 1.15 1.09 1.63** 1.14 1.11 1.79*** 1.51 OR −.03 (.02)* −.09 (.02)*** −.07 (.03)** −.04 (.01)*** −.62 (.07)*** −.07 (.07) −.25 (.04)*** −.10 (.03)*** .02 (.01)* .65 (.05)*** −.33 (.07)*** −.40 (.02)*** .01 (.00)* −.05 (.02)** −.06 (.02)** −.20 (.02)*** −.06 (.05) −.20 (.04)*** −.06 (.11) −.42 (.06)*** b (SE) b (SE) School climate [1.05–2.10] [0.93–1.98] [0.95–1.79] [1.02–2.04] [1.15–3.22] [0.26–1.04] [2.40–5.87] [0.59–2.33] [0.98–2.17] [0.74–1.80] [0.80–1.52] [1.18–2.53] [0.75–1.71] [0.98–1.26] [1.38–2.32] [0.82–2.76] 95% CI Missed school: Suspended Self-reported grades [1.15–2.46] [0.73–1.54] [1.00–1.90] [0.98–1.86] [0.84–2.25] [0.36–1.17] [1.00–3.02] [0.56–1.79] [0.71–1.48] [0.42–1.16] [1.14–1.16] [2.20–4.19] [0.79–1.83] [1.25–1.59] [1.07–1.73] [1.90–5.51] 95% CI Missed school: Alcohol/ drugs SOG-bullying [1.12–2.43] [1.00–2.22] [0.80–1.71] [0.77–2.07] [0.62–1.87] [0.24–0.96] [0.58–1.64] [0.48–1.96] [0.48–1.06] [0.26–0.67] [0.78–1.45] [1.59–3.05] [1.04–2.23] [0.93–1.16] [0.57–0.92] [1.91–5.80] 95% CI Gender-based bullying 1.65* 1.49* 1.17 1.26 1.07 .50* .97 .97 .71 .42*** 1.07 2.20*** 1.52* 1.04 .72** 3.33*** OR Missed school: Unsafe Table 2 Multilevel regression and logistic regression results for disparities in school experiences and perceptions of school climate between transgender and non-transgender youth in the representative subsample (CSS) Journal of Youth and Adolescence (2018) 47:1731–1742 1737 Further, compared to non-transgender youth, transgender youth perceived school climate more negatively (b = −.20, p < .001), though transgender and non-transgender youth did not differ in self-reported grades (b = −.06, p = .574). In the full unweighted sample, compared to nontransgender youth, transgender youth had lower selfreported grades. Bivariate results showed gender identity-related disparities in missing school because of feeling depressed or being suspended, and self-reported grades. Post hoc analyses were conducted to identify whether these null findings were accounted for by demographic factors related to race and ethnicity, and/or sexual orientation. These analyses were motivated by gaining insight into which demographic factors above and beyond gender identity are predictive of disparities related to absenteeism and academic success. The results from these analyses (available upon request) showed that when sexual orientation was included in the models, there was no association between gender identity and the outcomes. Specifically, LGB youth were more likely to miss school because of suspension or feeling depressed, and had lower self-reported grades, relative to non-LGB youth. Gender identity was associated with the outcomes when age, sex, race/ethnicity, and parental education (but not sexual orientation) were included in the models. Sexual orientation, and not race and ethnicity, seems to be a more proximal predictor of missing school because of depression and suspension, and lower self-reported grades. Excluded Analyses Preliminary analyses included an examination of four subcomponents of school climate: (1) school connectedness; (2) having caring relationships with adults at school; (3) opportunities for meaningful participation; and (4) teachers having high expectations of students. Gender identity was significantly associated with each of these outcomes with the exception of meaningful participation. The summary variable of school climate was included in final analyses for parsimony, as the intent of the study was not a nuanced examination of school climate specifically. ***p ≤ .001 **p ≤ .01 Discussion *p ≤ .05 SOG = sexual orientation and gender; transgender was a dichotomous variable (0 = non-transgender; 1 = transgender); LGB was a dichotomous variable (0 = non-LBG; 1 = LGB); unsure was a dichotomous variable (0 = not unsure; 1 = unsure); race was a categorical variable (referent = White); Hispanic was a dichotomous variable (0 = non-Hispanic; 1 = Hispanic); parental education was a categorical variable (referent = college graduate) −.08 (.01)*** −.18 (.01)*** −.35 (.05)*** −.79 (.05)*** [0.87–1.18] 1.01 .87 [0.72–1.11] 1.06 1.89 [0.77–1.13] .94 .87 .14 (.05)*** Don’t know Some college −.32 (.05)*** [0.71–1.06] [0.86–1.29] [0.73–1.03] −.18 (.02)*** −.13 (.01)*** −.72 (.05)*** −.53 (.05)*** [0.83–1.16] [0.85–1.17] 1.00 .98 [0.77–1.12] .93 1.04 .99 .94 −.15 (.05)*** Did not finish high school High school graduate −.02 (.05) [0.82–1.21] [0.84–1.28] .87* [0.76–0.99] .86* [0.83–1.09] .95** Hispanic Parental education −.16 (.04)*** [0.77–1.16] −.06 (.01)*** −.20 (.04)*** [0.78–0.98] −.06 (.02)** −.13 (.05)** .76* .77** No race reported −.23 (.05)*** [0.63–0.94] [0.61–0.95] .78** [0.66–0.92] b (SE) 95% CI OR 95% CI OR OR b (SE) 95% CI Self-reported grades SOG-bullying Homophobic bullying General victimization Gender-based bullying Table 2 (continued) b (SE) Journal of Youth and Adolescence (2018) 47:1731–1742 School climate 1738 Transgender youth often encounter hostile school experiences. Previous research underscores that transgender youth are more likely to experience victimization and harassment (e.g., Kosciw et al. 2016) and miss school because of feeling unsafe (Greytak et al. 2016) than their non-transgender peers. However, much of what is known about school experiences of transgender youth is based on Journal of Youth and Adolescence (2018) 47:1731–1742 non-representative samples, and therefore is not generalizable to broader populations, and/or on samples that conflate sexual orientation and gender identity (i.e., include LGBT youth as a monolithic group). With more attention to enumerated school policies inclusive of gender minority youth there is pressing need for clarity about the unique school experiences of transgender youth. By utilizing the largest known sample (CHKS) and the first representative sample (CSS) of youth to include a measure of gender identity, this study allows for a more direct comparison to previous studies and underscores the size of gender identity-related disparities generalizable to a broader population. Specifically, the findings show that compared to their non-transgender peers, transgender youth were more likely to: (1) be truant and miss school due to a variety of reasons (i.e., feeling depressed, feeling unsafe, to engage in substance use, and because they were suspended); (2) experience general and sexual orientation and genderbased victimization; (3) have lower grades; and (4) perceive school climates less positively. The pattern of findings was consistent between the large unweighted sample and the smaller representative subsample in bivariate analyses. These findings underscore the magnitude of gender identity-related disparities in school absenteeism: Compared to non-transgender youth, transgender youth had over three times greater odds of missing school because they felt unsafe and because of engaging in substance use. Furthermore, findings in this study highlight previously underreported explanations for reasons why transgender youth miss school. Individually, each of the factors related to school absenteeism presents an opportunity for the development of schoolbased interventions aimed at improving school environments and connection for transgender youth. For example, the presence of GSAs is associated with higher school connectedness among LGBT youth (Toomey and Russell 2011). Furthermore, Greytak and colleagues’ (2013) found that student clubs (e.g., Gay-Straight Alliances [GSAs]), supportive educators, LGBT-inclusive curricula, and comprehensive anti-bullying/anti-harassment policies improved school climate among transgender youth. Further research is needed to identify mechanisms to improve school climate for all youth, such as providing professional development for teachers on issues relevant to gender identity and expression, and implementing curriculum that is inclusive of diverse sexual orientations and gender identities. Multivariate analyses of the representative subsample showed that transgender youth did not differ from nontransgender youth in missing school due to feeling depressed or because they were suspended, or in self-reported grades, although there were statistically significant bivariate differences in these school experiences. Additionally, transgender youth in the full unweighted sample (CHKS) significantly differed from non-transgender youth in these outcomes in 1739 multivariate analyses. While findings were generally consistent between the CHKS and the representative subsample, there may be school-level factors not accounted for in the study (e.g., schools with more issues related to school safety may be overrepresented in the CHKS) that help explain the differences between the two samples in findings related to missing school because of feeling depressed or being suspended, and academic success. Follow-up analyses with the representative sample showed that sexual orientation may have been a stronger predictor than gender identity for missing school because of feeling depressed or being suspended, and self-reported grades. This finding emphasizes the need to also consider the intersection of youth identities, as other factors such as race, ethnicity, and sexual orientation often contribute to disparities in school experiences. Conclusions drawn from the findings of this study are limited because sexual orientation and gender identity were asked as a single item. Specifically, some youth who identify as both a sexual and gender minority may have only selected one or the other if, for example, they more strongly identified as transgender rather than as LGB. Inferences about how intersecting identities relate to disparities in school experiences from these data should therefore be interpreted with caution. Descriptive results show that transgender youth in both samples were much more likely than non-transgender youth to report being LGB (nearly half of transgender youth reported being LGB, compared to Purchase answer to see full attachment

  
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