British singer Will Young is urging U.K. authorities to tackle homophobia across schools in the country.

The Leave Right Now hitmaker, who is openly gay, insists there is still a wide-ranging issue among youngsters in British schools and alleges homophobic insults are still common in the playground.

He tells Britain's The Independent newspaper, "There is a disjoint... between the adult world and that of the world our children are occupying. I can walk around London or into my local pub in Cornwall and have no concern about being openly gay. This is not the case for young people.

"Within U.K. schools and on the streets and even in homes, 'gay' is used as one of the meanest and most savage and effective forms of insult. With it still comes the sense of wrongness, moral disgust and repugnance. Immediately the child is pushed to the perimeter, a social outcast...

"An astonishing 23 per cent of young gay people attempt suicide. This is not a small statistic, this is an epidemic, but still we find teachers not wanting to tackle homophobia. Whether they lack the power, the empathy or they have an overriding fear of parental reaction, it isn't good enough."