Child porn shared on WhatsApp group at Overijssel high school

Teenagers with smartphones and tablets
Teenagers with smartphones and tablets. (Photo: shmeljov/DepositPhotos)

Child pornography was shared on a WhatsApp group for pupils at the Carmel College Salland in the Overijssel town of Raalte. The school speaks of an "extremely worrying situation" in an email to parents. The school management gave the situation high priority and consulted with the police about follow-up steps, De Gelderlander reports.

"One of the group members sent sexually tinted pictures, that can not be allowed, on the WhatsApp group", the school management said in the email. This happened in the WhatsApp group for the 2nd class, which contains children of 13 and 14 years old. "We investigated the situation as quickly as possible and requested advice from the police about follow-up steps to be taken. We want to thoroughly investigate this situation, act with care and do not accept such behavior."

According to the school, a pupil in the class added "strangers" to the WhatsApp group and they sent the "unwanted and inappropriate messages". "It concerns child pornographic material", director of education Wendy Lemstra confirmed to the newspaper. The children in the footage do not attend the school. "Very serious. Moreover, punishable material to possess." The school became aware of the messages after one of the parents called the class mentor. "We ask the parents to talk to the children and to remove the messages as quickly as possible."

The school management will offer extra guidance and support for those who need it. "We can imagine that this situation raises questions or other reactions. Parents and children can contact one of us for this", the school management said. 

Carmel College Salland will also take action against the pupils responsible for sharing this material. "In collaboration with the police, the responsible pupils will be addressed and appropriate measures will follow", Lemstra said to the newspaper. "What exactly that will be is not yet clear. The investigation is still ongoing."

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