COMMONWEALTH of VIRGINIA
Department of Education
December 4, 2009
TO: Division Superintendents
FROM: Patricia I. Wright, Superintendent of Public Instruction
Sexting is defined by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children as “youth writing sexually explicit messages, taking sexually explicit photos of themselves or others in their peer group, and transmitting these photos and/or messages to their peers.” It is usually associated with cell phones but other technologies can be used as well. Sexting is becoming a widespread and complex issue that must be addressed by schools at the policy level. To help school divisions develop effective policies regarding this issue, the Virginia Department of Education’s Office of Educational Technology with assistance from the Office of the Attorney General of Virginia prepared an information brief. It may be found at http://www.doe.virginia.gov/support/technology/info_briefs/sexting.pdf.
The information brief includes examples and impact of sexting, implications for schools, legal consequences, what schools need to consider, and resources.
Questions may be directed to Jean Weller, educational technology specialist, at (804) 225-2825 or e-mail at Jean.Weller@doe.virginia.gov.