MOREHEAD, Ky. (WSAZ) -- 16 students at Rowan County Senior High School were suspended from school Monday for allegedly having sexually explicit images of other students on their phones.
"We were alerted to the fact that there was a child who had some knowledge of some pictures being out there of some minors and we've investigated that," RCSHS assistant principal Ray Ginter said. "We talked to several kids. At this point we have 16 that we found had an inappropriate picture on their phone."
The pictures surfaced late last week.
"We knew there was going to be a long list of kids," Ginter said. "So not knowing when we would complete it, we figured on Friday that the best thing to do was start the punishment after Friday. That way everybody would stay on the same page and the punishment would be fair and consistent across the board."
As part of their discipline, all 16 students have been banned from using their cell phones on school grounds for the rest of the year and had to miss Saturday's Homecoming dance. The ones who play sports were barred from competing in the first round of the soccer district tournament and a pair of football games.
School officials said the guilty parties were mostly in the freshman and sophomore class and consisted of both boys and girls.
"We contacted the high school and asked them for their plans how to deal with it as far as far as our discipline code book goes," said Glen Teager, an administrator with Rowan County Schools. "After discussing those plans with them, we felt very comfortable with them handling that internally."
As of now, no charges have been filed.
"Most of the parents have been very supportive," Ginter said. "In fact most of them are also continuing the punishment at home."
Ginter said the kids involved have been up-front and honest with him and are already remorseful. He also said it's the first time this has happened at RCSHS and administrators are working to prevent it from happening again.