Thousands have rallied behind Manor Lakes P-12 College principal Steve Warner after he was stood down.

Warner was filmed dragging one of his male students through the playground by the arm and was subsequently relieved of his duties by the Department of Education.

But a groundswell of community support has resulted in 15,000 people signing an online petition to reinstate the principal.

 “He has been an amazing influence on the school and its students. Steve’s dedication to his school community has been tremendous, petition author Mark England said.

“He has improved discipline and behaviour across the school and his management has seen many improvements in the school’s facilities for students, making for a fantastic environment.

“The worst outcome of this situation would be for the school to lose him as the principal and leader.

“His work has only just started to take effect and there are only good things that could come from him continuing in his role.”

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An extraordinary Manor Lakes College council meeting also took place by parents to express their support.

Howevadministratorstirs still remain appalled by the incident.

Education Minister James Merlino said,

“As the Minister for Education and as a parent, this footage is appalling and concerning,”

“Let me be very clear, I will not tolerate this kind of completely unacceptable behaviour in our schools.”