An investigation is still underway into the case of a Ladue Middle School student who gained access to a video chat site using a school computer where a middle aged man performed an online sex act for the student.
The student was caught by the district’s technology staff, disciplined, and police were notified. The website in question, and another similar one, have since been blocked by the district. Police is also investigating the location of the man who allegedly masturbated to the student on camera.
“Student safety is the district’s primary concern,” said Susan Dielmann, spokesperson for the Ladue School District, in a news release. “This includes internet safety, and every effort is made to ensure the district’s website filters are effective. This site was quickly blocked once the activity was detected, and due to immediate collaboration with City of Ladue police, a related site has now also been blocked by the district. Unfortunately, those creating inappropriate website content are constantly attempting to circumvent filters. It is a never-ending process to identify and block these sites and unfortunately, there are times when the efforts of those promoting these sites are successful.”
The incident occurred as the district considers the One-to-One learning initiative, which would provide high school students in the district their own laptops to use both at school and home.
Dielmann said that, at this time, approval of the initiative depends on funding. Dielmann, however, said that the school district will do the best it can to prevent inappropriate websites from being accessed through the laptops.
“The use of computers and the internet are, and will continue to be, a way of life for our students and have great educational value,” Dielmann said. “Should the One-to-One Learning Initiative move forward, the laptops issued to students would all be networked through the district's site filtering service while they are at school. It is possible for this service to extend to home use as well, and that is an option the district may explore and consider.”