EQUALITY campaigners have vowed to continue their fight for LGBT education despite their petition being rejected in Parliament.

Representatives from the Time for Inclusive Education (TIE) campaign were left disappointed yesterday after the Public Petitions Committee at Holyrood decided to reject their call for LGBT education to be a statutory requirement in schools.

TIE campaigners Jordan Daly, Liam Stevenson and John-Naples Campbell attended a hearing in October last year, where they presented a case for improved teacher training about LGBT issues and a curriculum reflecting this.

The group hoped that the introduction of this type of education would cut down on homophobic bullying, which they say has resulted in more than half of LGBT pupils in Scottish schools self harming and around a quarter attempting suicide as a result of abuse.

They argued that the Government should set aside specific funding for schools to send staff on training programmes to tackle and teach LGBT issues in the classroom.

Yesterday, ministers decided to close the petition, with Convener Michael McMahon saying there was "a lot of sympathy" for the campaign, however setting something in the curriculum was not possible.

He said: "I don’t think we can ask the government to do what the petitioner asked, which was to set something in the curriculum, and force local authorities to teach it in the way they were asking.

"I think they may understand that and I think they raised a very important issue but I don’t think there is anything more we can do with the petition."

He added: "The Committee appreciates that it can be extremely disappointing for petitioners when a petition is closed.

"We were appalled to hear from TIE about the bullying and social isolation experienced by many LGBTI+ young people in Scotland and that is why the committee unanimously expressed its sympathy for the petition when it was presented."

Mr McMahon said that having taken evidence from " a range of organisations including the EIS and COSLA", there was "little support to make teaching" a statutory requirement.

TIE founder Jordan Daly said the committee had made "absolutely the wrong decision."

He said: "How many more children are going to have to attempt suicide or take a razor to their flesh before we get somewhere?

"The Government’s current strategy to address this is not working.

"To close our case on technicality is shocking: there was no further consideration of any of the strategies or solutions that we handed to the Committee.

"With the lack of governmental commitment to tackle these issues, it is setting us on a trajectory whereby they will still be here in ten years time.

"We'll continue work on the ground, visiting schools, gathering support, and are still willing to co-op with the Scottish Gov and EIS to come up with a strategy to solve this."

Co-founder Liam Stevenson, said: "The campaign will continue, and we will keep raising these issues until we succeed.

"It's a setback, nothing more."