Jun 16, 2015 1:18 PM

NH1 News Investigates: Concord elementary school posts pictures, names of students online

NH1 News

CONCORD - We've been told about dangers of posting pictures and personal information on social media sites like Facebook.

That isn’t stopping one local elementary school from posting pictures of students - with their names - for everyone to see.

What starts out as a friendly post could give child predators all they need.

The YouTube video above is of a so-called “safety experiment” is spreading quickly among parents.

This man - Joey Salads - challenges moms on whether their kids would go with strangers.

His findings are eye opening.

Joey says, "I got some more puppies. Want to see the other puppies?" The child says yes and takes his hand.

From parks to public schools, safety experts say predators can gain a child’s trust simply by calling their names.

Names they can find on sites like Facebook.

The local public school page for Beaver Meadow Elementary School has a lot of student pictures with their names on the side.

It’s open to the public - no login needed.

We went to Beaver Meadow to speak with interim principal Melissa Scott.

Melissa Scott: “Can I help you?”

Celine: “I was hoping to see Melissa Scott?”

Melissa: “I’m Melissa Scott.”

Celine (flipping through the pictures): “What I noticed is that on your website, you have all of these kids with their names on it.”

Melissa: “Okay, now unfortunately, is not a good time for this to happen. And this isn’t something that I’m prepared to talk about.”

Celine: “Okay, when would be a good time to come and see you?”

Melissa: “Um, that’s a great question. Um, can I just look?”

Scott says she couldn’t talk, but she also couldn’t take her eyes - and her hands - off these pictures.

After Scott flipped through the packet of pictures, she said, “Yeah, and like I said, today’s not a good day for me to have this conversation with you. So I can contact your office at another time?”

Most parents, waiting in line to pick up their children were willing to talk, saying they signed waivers at the start of school.

However, “It is one thing to have pictures of kids, but to know their names and what school they go to ...” Erica Bouffard said. “The next thing you know, they could be walking off with your child.”

“That’s kind of scary when you think about it,” Jennifer Montague said. It’s kind of like a flag. ‘Hey, this is where they are!’”

“It wouldn’t really matter to me,” one father said while waiting for his child. When NH1 News asked him his name, he said, “Bill.” And when asked his last name, he said, “I’m not going to tell you that.”

The fifth-grader above fears that crossing guards aren’t enough to stop the threat against kids who walk or ride their bikes.

We don’t want anyone being kidnapped," she said. "That would be very, very dangerous.”

We checked all of the public schools in Concord.

Beaver Meadow is the only school posting student pictures and names.

Since NH1 News informed Scott about the pictures - two weeks ago - nothing has changed.

If you’re worried about your kids - check your school’s website and social media pages - and ask them to take down the pictures.


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