Tens of thousands of gay pupils in the UK have been forced to abandon their studies because of what campaigners describe as the "endemic" abuse of gay and lesbian pupils across the country. The gay rights group Stonewall estimates that more than 60,000 gay and lesbian pupils are victims of homophobic abuse that can range from name-calling to serious physical and sexual assaults.
Last year 13-year-old Laura Rhodes from South Wales died after taking an overdose. She had been bullied by classmates who had branded her the "school dyke". According to research 40% of gay adults who were bullied at school said they had attempted suicide at least once and more than half had contemplated self-harm.