Head writes to parents after primary school children 'come to school smelling of cannabis’

Andy Wells
Freelance Writer
Children at a school in Blackburn have reportedly turned up in the classroom smelling of cannabis (Getty/file pic)

Concerns have been aired by a headteacher of a primary school in Blackburn after children reportedly turned up smelling of cannabis.

A newsletter sent to parents of the Longshaw Community Infant School in Highercroft stated that families of any child smelling of the illegal drug will be reported to the police, according to the Lancashire Telegraph.

Head Andrea Batley is said to have send out the warning after staff at the school spoke of their fears of the effects of secondhand cannabis smoke on other pupils.

Mrs Batley’s newsletter says: “Please can I draw attention to the fact that cannabis remains an illegal drug in the UK and therefore children’s clothing and book bags should not smell of this substance.

“We have had a growing number of reports from staff regarding this issue and therefore we are in the process of developing a policy which will note when children’s clothing or possessions smell of cannabis and the school’s legal duty to inform other agencies.”

It is illegal to possess, grow, distribute, sell or grown cannabis in the UK (Getty/file pic)

She added: “I wanted to inform all our parents that we will be creating a policy to ensure we consistently take the appropriate action when we suspect children are being subjected to second hand smoke inhalation, especially relating to illegal substances.

“We know that is this is only happening in a small minority of homes, however we feel that it is completely unacceptable and not fair on the child to come to school with their book bag and clothing smelling of cannabis. I think most people would agree and a number of parents have contacted me after receiving the newsletter to say that they are glad the issue is being addressed.

“Cannabis use everywhere is becoming more prevalent, however this is an illegal drug and we will be reporting any incidents to the Police and Children’s Social Care where necessary to protect our children from what we know are the harmful impacts of second hand smoke and exposure to illegal substances.”

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Borough Conservative group leader Cllr John Slater said that he would "fully support the families involved being reported to the police and social services”.

A police spokesman said: “Where concerns are raised we will liaise with the school and where appropriate we will take proportionate action.”

It is illegal to possess, grow, distribute, sell or grown cannabis in the UK, with punishments ranging from a maximum prison term of five years to an unlimited fine.

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