BEDFORD, N.H. - School officials in Bedford, New Hampshire are investigating claims that freshman and sophomore boys were taking pictures of junior and senior girls without their knowledge.
Students and parents are disturbed about the allegations and some girls wonder if they've been victimized. School officials say a brave student tipped them off about what was going on.
"I think it's honestly disgusting," said junior Zoe Censabella.
"The boys' actions were inherently wrong," said Trinity Sfeir.
"I don't know what photo was taken of me, I don't know what I was doing, I don't know what I was wearing," junior Brinley Wilshire said.
School officials say 9th and 10th grade boys are accused of taking inappropriate photos of girls' body parts without them knowing. Then they shared the photos and graded them.
"We're not just women, we're also children, we should feel safe when we go to high school, we should feel safe in our classroom, we should feel safe with our peers, and I feel like it's honestly going to emotionally and mentally traumatize a lot of girls," Zoe said.
There are even allegations the boys made trading cards of the pictures.
"They took photos of girls, printed them out and then traded them like NFTs or Pokémon cards what is that?" Trinity said.
Administrators say they haven't seen the alleged photos, and the perpetrators haven't been identified. But now a petition online wants whoever's behind the secret photos to be expelled.
Trinity is one of more than 2,000 people who have signed it. "Women are not currency, they're not something you can trade for your pleasure or your entertainment, we are humans," she said.
The superintendent is urging anyone with information to speak up saying in a letter to the school community, "the best way to address and eradicate this type of misconduct is to talk with our kids."
"Girls should come to school, and they should know that they're safe, and that they're in a place that they can be safe, and not have fear that boys are going to photograph them at any moment," said senior Sophie Kasem.
Students hope those conversations about privacy, respect, and consent will be happening now.
"We're not disposable and it's not something that can just be brushed under the rug, it's something that needs to be reformed within the school," Trinity said.
The superintendent says should the investigation warrant police action, school resource officers are aware, and they are and ready to respond.
for more features.