When he came out in a school assembly, he received a lot of support from teachers and students alike. Some students, mostly the older ones, looked on Mark unfavorably, but that only spurred others, as well as many teachers, to encourage acceptance and caring.
I am fortunate never to have been in an openly homophobic environment. As a lad, I heard talk of "nancy boys" and "lezzies," but the topic was beyond my ken and so off the general radar, even at an all-boy's school (Liverpool Collegiate).
At university in the early 1960's, one knew that one or two lecturers in our department were gay men, but they were generally regarded benignly, as a bit unusual rather than weird or corrupt.
By 1999, when we moved from Southern California and I started teaching at a private school in San Jose, I was completely at ease having several gay colleagues. At present, about half of the school's department heads are gay/lesbian.
Until I retired, I was a member of the school's Gay Straight Alliance, a mostly student-led organization that enables members of the school community to educate themselves about issues related to gay, lesbian, bi-sexual and transgendered youth.
Thanks for asking the question, Aber.