EDUCATION Minister Adrian Piccoli has supported Toronto High’s decision to issue widespread suspensions over the school’s social media bullying incident.
In a statement issued on Friday, Mr Piccoli said it was important students were "able to learn in a safe and supportive environment”.
“Whenever bullying occurs, students need to know that principals will take very strong disciplinary action, including involving the police where necessary.”
A Department of Education spokesman said discipline policy was a matter for individual schools, but the department "will always support the fair and effective application of these policies, which must be within the Department’s guidelines".
Hostile behaviour that is “repeated and deliberate” over information and communication technology is considered cyber-bullying, according to the department.
Guidelines for staff list various forms of cyber-bullying including “flaming” (an online heated exchange), harassing and threatening messages, denigration, impersonation, outing or trickery, ostracism and sexting.