Nude student photos cause stir on campus

May 20, 2008 9:28:55 PM PDT
What some local students thought was fun and games turned into a whole lot more. Now, while students are buzzing, police are taking what happened very seriously Time and time again, we are reminded that technology has changed the culture within school walls. And at Santa Fe Jr. High, instead of intercepting that old note being passed around the room, teachers were tracking two students' nude photos sent by cell phones.

Cell phones are supposed to be turned off at the school, but that rule didn't stop the circulation of nude photos that brought humiliation to two female students.

"That can start really bad rumors and people remember a lot of things," said student Chase Quebe.

And the junior high students were talking when nude photos of two female students started hitting the in-box of cell phones all over campus. Administrators caught on when moods melted.

"There was a scuffle in the hall, a fight of some sort," said Superintendent John Whittemore with Santa Fe ISD. "Evidently, someone got the pictures that was not suppose to have gotten them."

At that point, it was too late. The photos, apparently taken by the two girls and sent to their boyfriends, had circulated to several classrooms.

Campus police started confiscating student cell phones, trying to track down the origin of the pictures. And any photos found on phones were deleted.

But the superintendent says damage control is nearly impossible in the age of the Internet.

"This is something that crops back up on MySpace or some website, somewhere down the line," said Whittemore.

And some of the elders arriving to pick up students fear the photos ending up in much worse hands.

"I would think that all these child molesters that are out, that's bad for them," said parent Lillian Lambert.

And Superintendent Whittemore says they are looking to take disciplinary action against the two female students and their boyfriends for the sending out the pictures last week. But he says it's almost impossible to discipline the other dozens of students who also received the photos.

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