how the hell do you start a GSA?

Anonymous's picture

okay, i've wanted to do this forever, and kept putting planning one off... but my first week of school is coming up in about a month and i want to be able to start a GSA, but i don't know how.

i know there's the whole how-to online guide ... but its 192 pages long, and i can't print that out, or read online it b/c i'd probably kill myself in the process.

does anyone have any tips or anything on how to do this?

Kkid28's picture

How to start a GSA

Normaly you need to go to the adminstation and talk to them about how you start a club at your school, all school districts are different.
It may be really hard to start one, it took many tries and at least 4 years to establish ours. and hopefully our president will get back to you, hes knows so much about this, i think he knows more than the superintendent!!!
Good Luck!
“In order to meet the challenge, you have to have that support,”
Jackie Joyner-Kersee

msquared's picture

This is a great (not to

This is a great (not to mention concise) guide to starting and running a GSA. It's geared towards students in California, but most of the stuff is applicable just about anywhere. http://www.gsanetwork.org/resources/start.html Of course, glsen.org is a great place to look, too.

As the president of a highly controversial GSA, my advice is to be as detailed as possible and communicate as much as you can with your principal...and do this waaaay ahead of time. Seriously. Get your game plan for the year set up within the first few weeks and then present all your ideas to your principal and talk it all over. This will save you an ass-load of pain and stress...take it from someone who knows! My GSA almost went down the toilet last year when the principal denied our action plans at the last minute consistently. Discrimination is bad enough without a deadline.

"But don't be afraid to be a fool. Remember, you cannot be both young and wise. Young people who pretend to be wise to the ways of the world are mostly just cynics. Cynicism masquerades as wisdom, but it is the farthest thing from it."
-Stephen Colbert

helterskelterrxo's picture

thank you both soooo much,

thank you both soooo much, this is really helping.
especially that link you gave me. :]

Kkid28's picture

hehe

See what I mean?
“In order to meet the challenge, you have to have that support,”
Jackie Joyner-Kersee

msquared's picture

Haha, I didn't realize it

Haha, I didn't realize it was you who commented earlier. I was like, "Who's this president that this chick is talking about?" XD

"But don't be afraid to be a fool. Remember, you cannot be both young and wise. Young people who pretend to be wise to the ways of the world are mostly just cynics. Cynicism masquerades as wisdom, but it is the farthest thing from it."
-Stephen Colbert

jeff's picture

Hmm...

My guess is not reading the 192 pages will lead to something you wish you'd read before you started...

Unless you live somewhere that's going to be very cool about things, it's important to go in knowing your rights, the law, what they have to let you do, etc.

It's not like it's going to be like reading 200 pages of Dickens anyway... not that that's a bad thing.

---
"Sell your cleverness and buy bewilderment." - Rumi

Add me on Facebook and MySpace.

helterskelterrxo's picture

with school coming up in

with school coming up in three days (yikes!) i'm starting to wish i read that 192 page guide...

& i live in a semi-homophobic, kind-of silently tolerant neighborhood (it's complicated, but if you lived here you'd understand).
like, i just found out that my best friend sold a house near me to a lesbian couple w/ (two?) kids. that's the only openly gay person(people) i know of anywhere near where i live. so, i'm not sure how much controversy i could stir up with this GSA/Diversity? Club

Kkid28's picture

yep!

Yes I was talking about you! :)

“In order to meet the challenge, you have to have that support,”
Jackie Joyner-Kersee

hebrew freak's picture

very carefully...

very carefully...

railroadhighwaydreams's picture

Hai, Just wanted to say that

Hai,
Just wanted to say that your help is helping me too (boy, am I eloquent this evening! *laughs*). Thank you!

I've been planning on starting one as well - I haven't looked too deeply into laws yet, and school starts first week next month. Right now though, I'm working on coming out to my parents (good start, no?).

An important part of starting one is also finding a teacher to aide over all of it, as well as a few others to help start it. I've got a rather large list of potential classmates (and upper classmen) who I'm hoping will be supportive of it (some have already come out, or are obviously queer and are open and lovely about it). So far there's one girl who's father is homophobic, but she's set to go against him by any means and help me start a GSA. She'll also help recruit others and help run a stand at lunch with information. But that's it so far! >.<
Finding a teacher is quite a bit harder to do, but that's certainly really important I would imagine, especially if the principal (principals in general) is open to the idea - their next question will probably be about who will oversee it.

Right,
cheers

Dark_Roses's picture

DiversityClub

A [former] friend of mine and I were planning on starting a GSA, but our principal thought it would be better to have a 'diversity club' instead, because it promotes tolerance of everyone who is different in any way, not just homosexuals.

The first thing you should do is find an open-minded teacher and ask them to be your sponsor. Then write a mission statement. Then you and your sponsor should set up a meeting with one of your school administrators and discuss the pros and cons of a GSA [or Diversity Club].

Then once you have permission to start the club, all you will have to do is find some people who are willing to join.
Good luck!!

-Annierose