An Auckland primary school which featured fake cocaine - in the form of icing sugar - as a prop at a fundraising event has apologised to parents.

Northcote Primary School, on the North Shore, has come under fire after photos of fake cocaine and razors set up at the event started surfacing on social media over the weekend.

The school had held its annual adults-only ball in a bid to raise funds for school projects. This year's theme was Vegas, Baby: 2016 School Ball.

It is understood the icing sugar was placed on mirrors, alongside razor blades, on tables in a way to make it look like the illicit drug.

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The school has since sent parents and caregivers a newsletter apologising for the incident.

The letter, signed by the school's board chairman Andrew Fox, said: "You may be aware of reports in newspapers, on radio and social media of fake cocaine props at our annual fundraising ball on Saturday night.

Posted by Northcote Primary School on Monday, 5 September 2016

"Yes, fake cocaine, in the form of icing sugar, was one of the many props and decorations displayed as part of the satirical Las Vegas theme: Vegas, Baby. In hindsight, this was an inappropriate choice of prop and we apologise for the offence it may have caused some people and for the reaction that has followed.''

Fox said the school did not encourage illegal or excessive drug-taking and pointed out that no children attended the ball, which was held at the school hall on Saturday.

"Unfortunately, the publicity over the decoration has dwarfed the huge amount of planning, work and passion [Friends of Northcote School] put into the ball, which raised approximately $28,000.''