A Minnesota-based online high school catering to gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender students has received strong interest from students across the country, reports the St. Paul Pioneer Press. Called the GLBTQ Online High School, it is based in Maplewood, Minn., and believed to be the first such school of its kind. Other online schools exist, as do bricks-and-mortar schools that serve gay students. But the Minnesota program is the first to combine the two features, according to the International Association for K-12 Online Learning. The school is the brainchild of David Glick, the first online learning coordinator at the Minnesota Department of Education, who says he has received applications from students across the country and from faculty around the world. The school’s online nature allows it to reach young people wherever they have internet access, especially in rural areas, whose smaller populations makes a physical version of his school impossible, Glick said. It also removes gay students from potentially hostile school environments and places them in what he touts as a "safe and welcoming educational community." But some fear this arrangement would further alienate teenagers already at risk…

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