14/08/2014 12:54 BST | Updated 22/05/2015 06:12 BST

School Allowed 11-Year-Old Pupils To Smoke

School allowed 11-year-old pupils to smoke

A school allowed children as young as 11 to smoke – with teachers handing out cigarettes at break times.

Pupils' cigarettes would be confiscated at the start of the day but returned by staff at break times.

Teachers at Elmete Central School in Leeds – which caters for pupils with behavioural problems – defended their actions saying it stopped kids from playing truant.

However, the school has now stopped the practice after a storm of criticism.

Paul Brennan, deputy director for children's services at Leeds City Council, said: "We take this issue very seriously and as soon as it was brought to our attention, we spoke to the school and issued an instruction that it must stop immediately.

"We are confident this practice has now ceased."

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