At the very end of Spirit Day, the entire school emptied onto the playground for a photograph to show our unity for all young LGBT people who have faced bullying, abuse or discrimination. And as our pupils jostled and argued over who would get to hold the rainbow flag, I knew that we had made a difference, and that things would never be the same again.
I've experienced homophobic abuse in London three times. The first happened when I was 22, and I was caught in a heaving Friday night crowd outside Tottenham Court Road tube station. Across a sea of faces, I made eye contact with a young, white male with a shaven head. He snarled at me: 'fucking poof!'
The pathetic statement from the Men's Rugby Team shows no engagement with the issues, apologising not for their misogyny and homophobia, but for the decision to publish it. The leaflet's authors not only excluded gay people from their society, but went further in employing homophobia as a promotional tool.
It's 2014 and there are still no openly LGBT people in English football. Not a manager, a player, nor even a physio. Other sporting organisations in the traditionally more conservative United States such as the NFL and the WWE and even Rugby Union and cricket here are streets ahead of 'the beautiful game' when it comes to equality.
"England can do everything Germany have done". Yet to do this they would need to actually look beyond obvious clichés and address uncomfortable truths. Where are the Lahm and Gomez in the England team to speak out on sexuality? Who is England's "most intelligent player"? It's not immediately obvious.