MORE than 70 children were excluded from BCP schools last year due to alcohol or drug-related issues.

A total of six were permanently excluded in Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole with 66 given fixed-term exclusions in 2019/20.

The figures were lower than the previous year with 23 permanent exclusions and 122 fixed term exclusions.

Councillor Nicola Greene, Portfolio Holder for COVID-19 Resilience, Public Health and Education said: "The decision to exclude children from school is made by the school’s head teacher and governing body.

"BCP Council is committed to working closely with schools, families, a range of specialist agencies to prevent exclusion and, where possible, support the reintegration of excluded children back into school at the earliest opportunity to avoid disruption to education."

When a child is permanently excluded they are no longer able to attend the school.

Fixed-term exclusions mean a child is barred from the school for a specified amount of time and may return.