Three sixth form pupils have been suspended from a Kent boarding school after they bought a "legal" drug.
The Year 12 students admitted experimenting with mephedrone, which is sold legally on the internet as plant fertiliser, to staff at Cranbrook School in Cranbrook.
As well as the temporary exclusion, they were ordered to attend a drug intervention programme next year while the rest of the sixth form was given an assembly on the dangers of so-called legal drugs by the school's head of chemistry.
Angela Daly, head teacher at the state-run mixed-sex school, said: "We know that teenagers experiment but we never condone drug misuse, whether it be alcohol, tobacco, illegal drugs or these new legal highs, the illicit drugs.
"Our school drug policy is clear and pro-active and we followed our policy closely with this mephedrone incident.
"We hope our students will have learned the truth about this substance and will be able to make more informed choices in the future.
"Teenagers are the target market for these legal highs and other drugs. We take our duty of care very seriously and always look to educate our students about healthy lifestyle choices."
Mephedrone's chemical formula is one molecule different to ecstasy, enabling dealers to claim it is not a controlled substance.
It is more commonly known on the street as "drone", "bubble", "meow meow" or "legal high".
Police in Durham have warned that five young people have been admitted to hospital in the county in recent weeks after taking mephedrone. In Sweden an 18-year-old died from taking the drug and it has now been banned there along with Israel, Norway and Finland.
December 12, 2009