Trauma therapist Emily, who did not provide her surname, said she learned on Saturday night that Bacchus Marsh Grammar students’ photos had been manipulated using AI.

About 50 girls, ranging from Years 9-12 at the school, were included in the doctored deepfake images.

Deepfake is a form of technology where a user can upload an image and synthetically augment a video of a real person or create a picture of a fake person.

“I went and picked my daughter up from a sleepover and she was very upset, and she was throwing up and it was incredibly graphic,” Emily told ABC Radio Melbourne on Wednesday.

“As a parent we try and educate our children, our daughters (to have) private accounts (and) hone it in ... it’s just unavoidable. They were all private accounts.

“She was cropped out but there’s just that feeling of, will it come up, will this happen again?”

Emily described the incident as disturbing and said the photos were mutilated and so graphic that she almost vomited, too.

“How can you reassure them that the measures are in place that it won’t happen again?”

A Victoria Police spokeswoman said officers have arrested a teenager in relation to the circulation of the explicit images, however he has been released pending further enquiries.

She said officers were informed that a number of images were sent to a person in the Melton area, about 15kms from Bacchus Marsh, via an online platform on Friday (June 7).

The investigation remains ongoing.

Bacchus Marsh Grammar, about 50km northwest of Melbourne, was counselling students on Wednesday.

Acting principal Kevin Richardson said students’ and families’ wellbeing was of paramount importance to the school.

“Bacchus Marsh Grammar has been made aware of the production and circulation of video content that includes images of students from the school community,” Richardson said in a statement.

“On behalf of the persons and families affected, Bacchus Marsh Grammar is taking this matter very seriously and has contacted Victoria Police.

“The wellbeing of Bacchus Marsh Grammar students and their families is of paramount importance to the School and is being addressed…”

The case comes hot on the heels of a student from Catholic boys school Salesian College, in the Melbourne suburb of Chadstone, last week being expelled for using artificial intelligence to produce explicit images of a female teacher at the school.

Queensland Nationals senator Matt Canavan said the circulation of the images represented a broader cultural problem.

“It is a cultural issue across our society that for whatever reason, the standards of behaviour are not being taught to young boys,” he told Nine on Wednesday morning.

“I wish I had the answers – I don’t – but I don’t necessarily think it’s something a government or a law can change.

“We’ve all got to chip in to try and make sure that young boys understand what it means to grow up to be a man and live by the standards that society expects.”

Canavan said technology had “supercharged” boys’ bad behaviour.

Along with the introduction of a range of online measures to address the ease of accessibility to pornography for children and young people and to tacklle extreme online misogyny, the Federal Government recently announced that it is looking to introduce legislation to ban the creation and non-consensual distribution of deepfake pornography.

In early May, Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said there should be zero tolerance for harmful content that glorifies violence against Australian women.

“Young adults should not be coached in disrespect or misogyny by online influencers,” he said.

“Social platforms have important social responsibilities and we need them to step up.”

The reforms are intended to clearly signal that creating and sharing sexually explicit material without consent, using technology like artificial intelligence, will be subject to serious criminal penalties.

In addition, a new phase of the Stop it at the Start campaign will launch in the coming days and run until May next year.

The new phase will specifically include a counter-influencing campaign in online spaces where violent and misogynistic content thrives, to directly challenge the material in the spaces it’s being viewed.

with AAP