The White House on Wednesday promoted a video by Education Secretary Arne Duncan celebrating Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) Day.

Students involved in high school and college GSA clubs raise awareness around issues including homophobia, transphobia and bullying.

“Since taking office, President Obama and his administration have taken many steps to ensure that all students are safe and healthy and can learn in environments free from discrimination, bullying and harassment,” the White House wrote in a blog post promoting the video.

In the 2-minute video, Duncan applauds the work of GSAs as “absolutely essential.”

“On the first-ever National Gay-Straight Alliance Day, I want to say thank you to all of the student leaders and faculty advisors who are doing the courageous work of making campuses safe places that are free of bullying and harassment,” Duncan says.

“Harassment and bullying are serious problems at schools and colleges, especially for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students. We have to dispel the myth that bullying is just a normal rite of passage, or an inevitable part of growing up.”

“This day is an opportunity to recognize the importance of Gay-Straight Alliances in schools across America,” Duncan adds. “On behalf of President Obama, I want to thank you for your hard work, your leadership, and your courage. Your work makes a difference – so keep it up.” (The video is embedded in the right panel of this page. Visit our video library for more videos.)

(Related: No gay t-shirts! Printer refuses GSA club order.)