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If you think I'm sexy

how sexy are you? It is a question teachers in Germany can get answered by logging into www.spickmich.de. The website, a version of Rate My Teachers, allows pupils to vote on everything from a teacher's looks to their sense of humour.

Like it's English equivalent, it has been a subject of controversy in Germany, where a woman went to court to try to close it down. After winning her case on the grounds the site was an invasion of privacy, the decision was overturned when the site's owners and three children appealed. Judge Margarete Reske said: "A degree of criticism must be allowed in any profession."

Heinz-Peter Meidinger, chair of the German Association of Grammar School Teachers, has echoed English unions by calling on the government to act. "Virtually every secondary school in the country appears to have harassed teachers with internet threats, at least to some extent," he said.

He observed that an increasing number of websites feature photo-montages depicting teachers in sexual poses, fake execution sequences and violent computer games with unpopular teachers' heads super-imposed on to the baddies.

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