The new landscape of online learning is a challenge and fundamental shift in the way that we are used to learning in schools. However, with these changes, there is a significant opportunity for schools at every grade level to encourage the practice of adding pronouns to Zoom names.
Zoom names have the potential to promote LGBTQ+ inclusion by normalizing the use of pronouns so that everyone is comfortable sharing them and so that students aren’t misgendered in class.
The National Institute of Health released a statement regarding the value of using a person’s correct pronouns, saying using a preferred pronoun, using a gender-neutral one if unsure, is an easy way to show respect.
Using a person’s pronouns correctly is extremely important and needs to be more strongly encouraged in schools. Zoom classes are a great opportunity for this because people actually have the ability to change their names and add pronouns to the end of their last name.
However, it shouldn’t just be LGBTQ+ students adding their pronouns because normalizing the practice of identifying one’s pronouns is a fundamental aspect of inclusion.
“When allys of the LGBTQIA+ community take part in this practice[sharing pronouns], they signal to Queer individuals that they are an ally as well as open up the conversation for a Queer individual to share their identity back,” UNC Wilmington’s LGBTQIA resource center said.
Normalizing the practice of sharing one’s pronouns for all individuals regardless of whether they are LGBTQ+ or not is a simple and necessary step towards promoting the acceptance of LGBTQ+ individuals in schools. This practice should be encouraged by administrators, teachers and students.
For students and teachers, in particular, a great way to start this practice is to add your pronouns to your Zoom name and encourage your friends/students to do the same. The steps to permanently add your pronouns to your name for every zoom call is as follows:
- Open the Zoom app and select the Settings icon in the upper right corner.
- Select Profile.
- Select Edit Profile.
- Click Edit next to your name.
- Write in your pronouns after your last name. (ex: Fisher (she/her))