Thursday, November 01, 2012
Australia: Students suspended following comments on Facebook page
The Principal sounds rather high and mighty but the school does appear to be a rather violent one so maybe that is relevant. Some posts do appear to have been genuinely abusive. Suspending students over it is pretty dubious however. Should we not expect a school to try education instead?
To some degree what was actually said is relevant. Were there threats of violence, for instance? It seems not. The principal seems to be of the view that nobody should say anything bad about anyone -- which is clearly excessive. There is a rather sycophantic radio interview with him here.
A GOLD Coast principal has launched a crackdown on cyber bullying, suspending any student who posts abusive messages on a school Facebook page.
Southport High School principal Steve McLuckie has suspended several students behind a series of vicious cyber attacks on the Facebook page.
The move has divided education heavyweights and the school community. Some parents say the principal is going too far and limiting their children's right to free speech, but supporters praise Mr McLuckie for taking on "trolls".
"It is not a private page, this is a public page," he said. "The comments are inappropriate and will not be tolerated. If you are going to be inappropriate, then we will take action. "Bullying and harassment will simply not be tolerated, and we stand by that."
"We, as a society, do not put up with anyone putting people down and belittling them," he said. "As a society we do not accept that, and we are trying to educate and train students to be a part of that society."
One mother, who asked not to be named, had two students at the Southport school and said they had a right to free speech. "They haven't done anything wrong. They have posted on a Facebook site - so what," she said. "They have accessed the site in their own time. The school has no right to punish my children for what they do in their own time. "That's my job. The school is out of line."