Children as young as seven caught sexting in schools, study finds

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Primary school pupils as young as seven have been caught sexting in school, according to a study by a teaching union.

A report by the NASUWT found that more than half of teachers said they were aware of incidents of children sexting at their school, and a quarter of teachers said they were aware of 11-year-olds sexting.


The majority of incidents involved pupils aged 13 to 16, the report said, but there had been at least one case of a child as young as seven being caught sexting.

In one incident, a girl pretended to fancy a boy so he would send her a picture of his penis. She then shared the pictured with others.

‘Many young people see this activity as part of everyday life, despite the severe risks involved,’ said a spokesman for the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC).

(Picture: Getty Images)
Many teachers had come across pupils using social media to send bullying or insulting messages (Picture: Getty Images)

‘When something goes wrong, the consequences can be devastating. Apart from exposing them to bullying when images are shared, it could make children targets for sex offenders in some cases.’

The Guardian reports that ChildLine dealt with more than 1,200 cases last year of young people worried about indecent images they had shared.

It also revealed that half of teachers who took part had come across pupils using social media to send insulting, bullying or sexist messages to each other.

Half of them said they were aware of pupils sending homophobic or racist messages.

The NASUWT study is due to be launched at the union’s annual conference in Birmingham on Friday.