Plans underway for new school to provide safe environment for LGBTQ students

Updated: Apr. 25, 2019 at 8:26 PM CDT
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BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - A new charter school is in the works right now that would provide a welcoming environment for LGBTQ students and their allies.

It would be called The Magic City Acceptance Academy.

Birmingham AIDS Outreach announced it’s in the application process to create the school.

It would be for 9th through 12th grade students.

It’s an extension of the Magic City Acceptance Center, which has served over 800 LGBTQ youth with free educational programs and resources.

“In having the youth center, we’ve talked to them and had special programs with them and everything. We’ve figured out that there was a really high dropout rate, or there were a lot of students that encountered this on a daily basis, and kind of isolated themselves,” said BAO Development Director Kyle Pugh. “So we’re trying to create a space where these kids can continue to get their education, have the whole high school experience without having the fear.”

The announcement comes just days after a Huntsville teen committed suicide after being bullied for being gay.

“Any loss is one too many,” said Pugh. “And any that we can avoid, even if it doesn’t go to that level , I think is a success story for us. So, any sort of bad situation that we can get someone out of, or resource that we can offer to brighten their day a little bit, or make their life a little bit easier, is what we kind of stand for.”

They plan to have the application complete by the end of the year, with the possibility of the school opening in the next two years.

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