LGBTQ+ is an abbreviation for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning and more. This term encompasses sexual orientation and gender identity. Sexual orientation describes a person’s emotional, romantic, or sexual attraction to other people. Gender identity is an internal, deeply felt sense of being male, female, a blend of both or neither.

Here are a few terms to get you started:
  • Lesbian- a woman who is emotionally, romantically, or sexually attracted to someone of the same gender identity

  • Gay- a person who is emotionally, romantically, or sexually attracted to others of the same gender

  • Bisexual- a person who is emotionally, romantically, or sexually attracted to people of more than one gender

  • Transgender- a person whose gender identity differs from the sex they were assigned at birth

The plus sign in LGBTQ+ represents other identities such as intersex and asexual.


GSA stands for Gay-Straight Alliance or Gender-Sexuality Alliance.  GSAs are student led clubs in schools.  Simply having a GSA at a school has been found to decrease negative remarks about sexual orientation and gender identity and increase students’ feelings of safety.  Each GSA is different, but they typically focus on support, advocacy, and/or social activities.

You do not have to identify as LGBTQ+ to join a GSA.  Individuals who do not identify as LGBTQ+ but support this community are called Allies. 

Interested in joining a GSA?  Look to see if you school already has one.  Sometimes your school’s club may not be called a GSA but goes by a different name.  If you school doesn’t have a club like this, you can start one!

Need Help?

Learn More

Healthy HCPS Square- Color PNG.png

Links on Healthy HCPS are being provided as a convenience and for informational purposes only: they do not constitute an endorsement or an approval by Hillsborough County Public Schools of any products, services, or opinions of the corporation or organization or individual. Hillsborough County Public Schools bears no responsibility for the accuracy, legality or content of the external site or for that of subsequent links. Contact the external site for answers regarding its content.

This publication was supported by Grant or Cooperative Agreement number 5 NU87PS004293-02-00, funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or the Department of Health and Human Services.

© Copyright 2020 Hillsborough County Public Schools . All Rights Reserved.