Educational Equity Program

Our Mission

  1. We aim to decrease inequity and increase LGBTQ+ inclusivity in classrooms, schools, districts, and youth organizations. 
  2. We provide support, teach concrete intersectional equity strategies, facilitate self-reflection, and assist with policy changes.
  3. We encourage youth to develop their leadership skills and to learn that their voices matter.

Program Details

  • Educators, Educational Leaders/Cabinet Members, School Board Members, and Youth Service Providers 
  • MN GSA Leadership Council
  • MN Youth Summit for GSAs and Educators
  • MN GSA Network
  • MN GSA Advisor Network
  • MN LGBTQ+ Educator Network

Educational Equity means finding what every student needs to be successful - academically, socio-emotionally, and everything-in-between- and getting it for them. The process is complex, dynamic, and on-going: owning flaws and biases, engaging in courageous conversations to challenge prejudice and discrimination, creating environments where students feel safe to share what they need, and breaking down any systems that are creating barriers. Students who feel valued, seen, and celebrated are the ones who will find success. 

Minnesota’s Educational Equity gap is one of the worst in the nation. We need to continue to work together so that every student can get what they need.

Contact Us

Kelly D. Holstine

Director of Educational Equity


Blaine Kelley

Educational Equity Coordinator

The federal Equal Access Act (20 USC 4071 et seq.) mandates that under certain circumstances, students who wish to create or run a GSAs (“Gay-Straight Alliances” or “Gender and Sexuality Alliances”) have the legal right to do so

In recent years, several Minnesota school districts have adopted “gender inclusion policies,” which articulate a district’s planned approach to accommodating the needs of transgender and gender-nonconforming students

In 2017, the Minnesota Department of Education, working with the Department of Human Rights, released its Transgender Toolkit, a booklet outlining a series of best-practice recommendations for schools working to address the concerns confronting transgender and gender-nonconforming students

Information for LGBTQ Students: State and federal law offer lesbian, gay, bisexual, and/or transgender/gender-conforming students protection from discrimination and harassment in their schools

In 2014, the Minnesota State High School League approved a policy allowing transgender/gender-nonconforming students to establish their eligibility to play on the team corresponding to their lived gender

If you’re looking for a progressive campus that takes a strong stand against discrimination — and won’t break the bank — read on for the results of our latest study.

Federal law also protects Minnesota trans students. Title IX prohibits discrimination in federally-funded public schools on the basis of "sex" (See: 20 USC § 1681)

For trans students applying to colleges, very confusing questions can arise surrounding financial aid

What are GSA's?

GSAs are student-led groups that support lesbian, gay, bisexual, queer, questioning, and allied (LGBTQA) students. Traditionally, GSA has stood for Gay Straight Alliance, but in the context of this network, GSA stands for Gender and Sexuality Alliance to be clear that everyone is welcome no matter how you identify on the spectrum of gender and sexual orientation. If you want to start a GSA at your school email or call our Youth and Schools staff: | 612.822.0127

What is the MN School Pride GSA network?

This network connects LGBTQA middle & high school groups around the state and provides youth and educators with support, education, relationship building, and leadership development opportunities. The network primarily consists of school-based GSAs, but faith and community-based groups for LGBTQA students ages 10-18 are also welcome to join.

We established the network in partnership with Out 4 Good in Minneapolis Public Schools and Out for Equity in St. Paul Public Schools. Support from the Minnesota Department of Education's School Safety Technical Assistance Center has helped the network grow and expand our connections with schools and educators. 

Register your GSA

What are the benefits of joining the network?

This network exists to build the capacity of LGBTQA students and educators to create schools where all youth can thrive. Members get access to resources, trainings, guest speakers, & fun events. OutFront staff also do regular, interactive visits with GSAs in the network. Some of the topics we offer include:

  • Just Getting Started! How to make your GSA inclusive, effective, & fun!
  • Understanding Gender and Being a Trans Ally
  • Intersections of Identity: How race, culture, ability and other aspects of identity impact the LGBTQ experience

Request a Visit

MN GSA Leadership Council

We facilitate a year-long leadership program for a select group of GSA LGBTQ+ student leaders who meet twice a month for:

  • Relationship Building
  • Skill development
  • LGBTQ+ Issue discussion
  • Event planning

This Leadership Council plans and leads our annual Youth Summit for more than 500 LGBTQ+ students every spring. They also join OutFront staff as co-facilitators during trainings for educators.

Each GSA also has two Student Leads who represent their GSA to the larger network. Student leads receive regular communication with ideas, resources, and tools for GSA organizing. They connect regularly with other Student Leads and Leadership Council members in person and online.

The Leadership Council, with the help of OutFront staff, plan the annual Youth Summit which brings more than 500 students and educators from across the state to collaborate and learn together. At the end of the day students get the opportunity to meet with their state legislators to talk about the issues that are important to them.

Apply to join the council today!


Youth Summit 2019 Logo

Youth Summit 2019

Reconnecting With Our Roots

Thursday, March 21st, 2019

8am-4pm | Saint Paul College | 235 Marshall Ave, St. Paul


Lead or Attend Workshops on:

  • Building collective power with LGBTQ+ youth across MN

  • Making schools safer for all identities

  • Centering youth stories to drive change

  • A topic of your choice!


The 2019 Youth Summit is a powerful event for students in grades 9-12. This event brings over 500 LGBTQ+ youth and allies together for leadership development, networking, and the chance to speak directly with state legislators about issues that matter to them. The day begins with an opening ceremony, speakers, and youth-led workshops. Adults will attend sessions on creating inclusive schools and best practices for supporting LGBTQ+ youth. After lunch, participants will head to the State Capitol for lobbying meetings with their legislators.

Total cost is $15 per person which includes lunch, materials, and parking vouchers. Scholarships are available for anyone in need. Last year’s Youth Summit was at capacity so register ASAP to reserve your spot!

Registration deadline is Feb 28th (extended to March 7), with workshop proposals due March 1st.

Teachers, we encourage you to bring a group of students and colleagues!

Students, sign up with your GSA, friends, or register to come on your own!


*You must register in advance to attend Youth Summit 2019*

Submit a Workshop Proposal

(A downloadable Registration Packet is available HERE to help you prepare your GSAs)


sponsor/table at the youth summit

Thank you to our Youth Summit Community Leader sponsors!


The 2019 Outfront Minnesota Scholarship

The purpose of the OutFront Minnesota Scholarship is to provide financial assistance to graduating high school students who identify as part of the LGBTQ+ community and plan on attending an institution of higher learning. This $12,000 scholarship will equal $3000 per annum paid out over four years. If the recipient attends college for less than four years, the scholarship will be shortened appropriately, e.g., if the recipient attends a two year college, the scholarship will be awarded for two years for a total of $6,000. Annual reviews will be conducted to ensure recipients are maintaining their academic standing and the scholarship may be terminated for failure to do so.

The founder of this scholarship program, Dan Livak, wanted to create a scholarship to help members of our community advance themselves through education. He started managing
on his own at 16, working full time while also maintaining a full high school and then college curriculum. Having to figure everything out without a support network can be difficult, and this scholarship program was created to help ease some of that stress, through financial aid and mentoring support.

To apply please fill out the online application: APPLY

For more information, please reach out to Junior Avalos at