Queer Decisions in Early Childhood Teacher Education: Teachers as Advocates for Gender Non-conforming and Sexual Minority Young Children and Families


  • Janice Kroeger Kent State University
  • Lis Regula The University of Akron The Department of Biology


anti-bias, gay-lesbian, transgender, early years


Using a review of internationally informed literature, United States policy, and teaching stories, this article frames the nuances of teacher education for positive advocacy for young children and their families who are in sexual or gender minority groups. The article discusses the use of biological knowledge(s) and fuller understandings of sexuality versus gender, as fluid, but not equal, constructs. We include the current challenges for full inclusion as well as anti-bias responses, rather than bully prevention, to support lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT+) young children and/or their families. When the classroom includes those students who are questioning their gender, or who are performing gender-ambiguous or gender-nonconforming behaviors (+), parents often turn to teachers for support. Our paper explores current advocacy skills that teachers need in order to support children and their families reach their fullest potential(s).

Author Biography

Janice Kroeger, Kent State University

Teaching, Learning, Curriculum