What teens are being told about sexting

 

STUDENTS as young as 12 have been given state-sanctioned sexting tips, on an explicit website endorsed by Education Queensland.

"Sextiquette'' advice for teens is among the taxpayer-funded websites listed in Education Queensland's guide to compulsory "respectful relationships" lessons in high schools.

The Line website - which has received $7 million in federal funding since 2013 and is run by the domestic violence charity Our Watch - gives advice on "how to be better in bed''.

And it cautions kids not to send sexy texts to their parents by mistake.

"Remember, 'Dan' is dangerously close to 'Dad' in your contacts, and that mistake could be awkward," it says.

"As long as you and your sender/receiver are both into it and old enough, there are plenty of ways to have a sexty time."

The site included a hyperlink to "50 example sexting ideas you can use right now''.

Most messages were too raunchy for publication, but examples include "I want you to be really rough'' and "I'm going to let you do anything you want to me''.

Others were: "I'm going to make you beg for it'' and "let me take control tonight''.

A furious federal Social Services Minister Anne Ruston, whose department funds The Line, yesterday demanded it be taken down.

"It is clear that some of the website's content is inappropriate, particularly for the stated target audience of young people 12 to 20,'' she told The Sunday Mail.

"As such I have directed Our Watch to take the website down and to conduct a full review of the content.''

Bravehearts founder Hetty Johnston yesterday blasted Education Queensland for "pointing children to something that's totally inappropriate''.

Education Queensland yesterday announced a review of the Respectful Relationships material after The Sunday Mail questioned the sexting links.

A spokeswoman said the department's website provided links to resources for parents to use to reinforce learning at home.

"There is no recommendation from the Department of Education that children use the material," she said.

"The use of any such resource is a matter for individual parents."

Our Watch, chaired by former Australian Ambassador for Women and Girls Natasha Stott Despoja, thanked The Sunday Mail for "bringing this to our attention'' and removed the link to the 50 sexting examples on Friday.

"The Line website was linked to external content which should not have been there and the link has now been removed," chief executive Patty Kinnersly said yesterday.

Australian Christian Lobby Queensland director Wendy Francis said it was wrong for Education Queensland to give legitimacy to websites encouraging sexting.

Education Minister Grace Grace declined to comment.



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