Date of Submission


Document Type



Doctor of Education




Sexually diverse, queer, heteronormativity, homophobia, Identity affirming, inclusion, equity


This inquiry draws upon a variety of theoretical perspectives and leadership approaches, including critical and queer theories, and the transformative leadership approach, for the purposes of identifying an appropriate solution to creating inclusive and identity affirming learning environments for sexually diverse students. This inquiry provides insight that will help to further understand the experiences of sexually diverse students in the education system, while exploring strategies for creating learning environments that affords these students value, dignity, and respect. It is proposed that a transformative leadership approach, as it is grounded in social justice efforts, may serve to stimulate the conversation amongst stakeholders, including school leaders, with the goal of transforming the organization into one that responds to the needs of marginalized students, including the sexually diverse. The relevant literature and reflections suggest that schools are categorically heterosexist institutions that exclude sexually diverse students, rendering them inferior, while inflicting significant harm. The findings of this inquiry project have serious implications for the urgency of educational institutions to address the harmful heteronormative and heterosexist practices that are rampant in the school system, while holding such institutions to account.