One of Craven’s top schools has excluded a number of pupils following an investigation into two drugs-related incidents.

Ermysted’s Grammar School in Skipton – deemed outstanding by Ofsted inspection and among the top ranking state schools in the country – says the incidents came to light through the vigiliance of staff and prompt action was taken.

Headmaster Graham Hamilton, in a letter to parents, said: “I wish to assure parents the staff and governors take the issue of illegal substances in school extremely seriously. Where there are concerns and suspicions of illegal drug use we will always investigate and we will involve the police where appropriate.

“Our Drugs Education Policy states clearly: ‘Illegal or unauthorised drugs, as well as tobacco, alcohol and solvents are not permitted to be brought to, sold, passed on, obtained or consumed on or off the school premises. Any breaking of these rules may result in a range of punishments including permanent exclusion’.

“The incidents last week came to light through the vigilance of staff. Their prompt action meant the matter could be dealt with, reducing any risk to others.

“Whilst the events are disturbing for all concerned, they have at least allowed us to show a strong and united stand against illegal drug use in school and I hope parents/carers will be reassured by our actions.”

Mr Hamilton reiterated parts of his letter when contacted by the Herald.

Ermysteds has about 800 boys on its roll and was described as an outstanding school that provided excellent education and care for its students in its last Ofsted report in 2008.

And the inspectors stated: “The care, guidance and support offered to students are excellent. Students are keenly aware of the school’s values and most share them.”