As a result of his prank, the 13-year-old Cuthbertson Middle School student was initially suspended for 10 days and charged with being in possession of and having the intent to distribute an “illegal drug, counterfeit or synthetic drug.” School officials with Union County Public Schools have since suspended the boy for an additional 45 days with attendance in an alternative school program.
The student wasn't merely suspended, he was practically expelled!
The ten day suspension, while severe, was at least understandable. Giving another student even fake "drugs" could have unforeseen consequences (such as other students attacking or robbing the student thinking it was actual marijuana). A short term suspension reasonably impresses upon the student and his family how dangerous this situation could have been.
Forty-five days in the alternative program would likely harm the "prankster" more than it would help, exposing him to many ill-behaved students and possibly actual drugs. Punishments should only be constructive, and I don't think this would benefit him.