CALIFORNIA AVENUE — Administrators at Lincoln Middle School have suspended five students following a series of incidents that have involved drug-related arrests, cyberbullying and altercations reminiscent of the movie, “Fight Club.”

Principal Suzanne Webb sent a letter home to parents on Wednesday letting them know of an increase in “three disturbing behaviors” recently taking place among the middle school students, informing that administrators and teachers plan to revisit the Student Code of Conduct regarding actions that could result in suspension.

The letter was sent just days after four students were arrested during school hours on March 13 for alleged possession of marijuana.

Acting on an anonymous tip, Santa Monica Police pulled the students from class around 11:45 a.m., ultimately arresting them and booking a 14-year-old male with possession for sale of marijuana, said SMPD Sgt. Renaldi Thruston. Three students between the ages of 12-13 were booked with possession of marijuana, found to have just under 1 ounce.

The students were booked at the station and later released to their parents.

SMPD officers assigned to Lincoln plan to meet with school parents later this month.

“The big issue is that we (might) have students that were selling drugs and we’re very concerned about any drugs on our campus and we’ll deal with it as per our board policy,” Superintendent Tim Cuneo said.

If found guilty of selling drugs, the student will be automatically expelled, Cuneo said.

Another student involved in a fight on campus this week has also been suspended.

Thruston said he has not received any reports about a Fight Club-like altercation on campus. The letter sent by Webb states that such activities are occurring among students.

Calling it “fight promoting,” the incident involves a student organizer who targets two possible opponents. The fight usually involves other students who watch and bet money on the outcome.

“If the target refuses to engage in the fight, he/she is expected to repay the bystanders the amount of their initial bets,” Webb states in the letter. “Sometimes the student organizer posts the fight on the Internet.”

Cyberbullying, which involves using technology to bully, has been an increasingly growing problem in schools across the country as more students communicate through text messages and social networking sites like Facebook and MySpace. The issue prompted the SMPD to produce a film starring Santa Monica High School students called “Send or Delete,” which premiered last year.

The district has banned social networking sites from its computers. The cyberbullying incident took place several weeks ago, Cuneo said.

“We’ve been proactive in dealing with these issues,” he said. “These are kids and my concern is we want to protect the safety and welfare of all children there and do not want drugs on our campus because there are drugs in the community.”

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