Growing up, I was always the goody-two-shoes of the classroom. When I was younger, I would help my classmates if they fell down, always do my homework, and told the teacher when someone was doing something bad. This progressed to often becoming one of the teacher’s favorite kids when I was older. As such, I was assigned tasks holding a smidge of responsibility such as collecting homework or running special errands for teachers. I thought I was being a good student – everyone else called me the teacher’s pet.
But I would have rather been the teacher’s pet than the disruptive student that often drive a teacher mad. Children who bully, misbehave or otherwise disrupt lessons are often the bane of an educator’s existence. Although this student may have internal reasons for acting out (violence at home, not being given enough attention, etc.) for the most part, teachers can’t stand them.
Talk to any teacher with their fair share of years under their belt and they often have more than one story about a troublesome body in the classroom. If you’re lucky, they may even have a tale of how they got revenge on the kid who really got under their skin.
Here are a few of our favorite stories where a teacher defeated an over-zealous student.
45. This Professor Changed A Threatening Letter Into A Teachable Lesson
“I had a letter mailed to my office, as in paid postage etc, that was basically threatening me, saying I better stop handing out Cs and Ds or “word on the street” was going to be that I was a bad teacher and no one would take my class and I’d be out of a job.
I had a pretty good idea of who it was, obviously immediately ruled out all the students doing well in my classes, but didn’t think direct accusations would be really effective anyway.
I decided to take it to each of my three classes and turn it into a lesson on faulty rhetoric. My expectations were exceeded when I began to read the letter out loud and without fail, each class erupted in laughter and exclaimed things like “what a jerk!” before I could even weigh in.
The kid I suspected the most definitely sat slumped in his chair without much to say that day.” okkoto
44. These Students Not Only Plagiarised Together, They Also Chose The Wrong Paper To Steal From
“I was in a class where the professor had the two blatant plagiarists stand up and read both of their papers at the same time.
Halfway through without even looking at them and his eyes turned to a wall, he said out the last conclusion statement. Turns out they stole from his own body of work and they changed just enough of the paper to make it past the checker (but he reads every paper anyways). It was the most awkward and hilarious thing I have watched to this day. He then told them that each paper they wrote would be read out loud by them after each submission and he would personally grade their papers. They also had to sit at the front and he would call on them with every open-ended question first.
To be clear, he was furious that these two stole from him, call it their ideas, change it into a weaker structure and complain about their low-grade. He crushed them, it was great.” sect-10
43. He Who Smelt It, Dealt It!
“I taught English at a ritzy private school in South Korea. We weren’t allowed to discipline the kids for any reason, no matter what, because the school was making money from the tuition.
For the most part, the kids (grade 5-6) were pretty good but there was this one kid. He was a little sh*t about everything, always disruptive, bullying the other kids, throwing pencils, writing swear words in Korean on the whiteboard before class, never listening, etc.
I started eating a lot of kimchi on the days I taught that specific class, which gave me wicked indigestion. When I walked by the kid I would let out these horrible silent creeping hot farts. No one ever blames the teacher and after a couple of weeks, he became known as the farty kid. He was still a little jerk, but it made me feel better knowing that he was knocked down a few pegs.” funsizedsamurai
42. Who Hits Their Instructor?
“Not a ‘traditional’ teacher, but a self-defense instructor. Was running a class on defense vs knives. One thing you have to accept.
If you are in a knife fight, you almost 100% will be cut.
Anyway, the drill was this: each student paired up with a partner and had to parry/block the knife-wielder for 2 minutes. I jokingly said, “Anyone who makes it 2 minutes gets to teach the next class!”
I’ve got about 18 students. The drill goes on, and in the end, I ask if anyone didn’t get cut at all. One guy (younger, maybe 18-19), who was a kind of ‘problem student’ raises his hand. This is a kid who always questions everything. Nice enough, but kind of a jerk.
Now, his partner for the drill was an older guy, slower, and this kid was in good shape, so I could see where he might have been fast enough.
“Okay,” I tell him, taking a rubber knife, “Let’s see.” When he is ready, I come at him, and it takes all of 3 seconds before I slashed him across the midsection.
This is fine. I hand him back the knife, and say something like “Not bad, but have your partner speed it up next time.”
I turned around and heard him say “I bet you can’t do better.”
I turned back and he rushed me. Several problems here. One, don’t just randomly attack students. Two, definitely DO NOT ATTACK your instructor. It’s pretty disrespectful.
He lunged at me full force. Rubber or not, these knives are pretty solid and can hurt.
I blocked, and on pure instinct, full force punched him in the neck. He dropped, coughing.
Now, since they weren’t actively working, my entire class saw this. I felt terrible, but most of my students started clapping.
I helped him up, and whispered, “Don’t EVER pull that sh*t again.” He nodded, and at least seemed embarrassed.
Never had another problem with him. Good kid, just was out of line.” SoberApok
41. He Gave His Student A Nickname That Stuck
“I taught middle school for 7 years and dealing with 8th graders can be a bit trying. I had this one male student who whined about everything.
Every assignment, project, lecture involved some level of whining from this particular kid. He was a good-looking football jock who was just lazy when it came to academics. At some point while he was being particularly annoying, I looked at him and said “Settle down, Francis” (not his real name and if you’ve ever seen the movie Stripes you’ll recognize the line). It was immediately obvious that the name bugged the crap out of him.
From that moment forward I started calling him Francis on a daily basis just to irritate him and he hated the name. I told my wife about it who was his math teacher at the time and she started calling him Francis as well.
Soon all of his peers at school started addressing by Francis as well. I got such joy hearing people walking down the hall yell out “Hey Francis!” and seeing the irritated look on his face every time he heard the name.”
40. This Is A Very Mature Approach
“High school teacher.
I have had a number of challenging students in my 15 years as a public school teacher. These kids sometimes don’t know how to act. They might lash out and treat teachers with disrespect. They might blow off assignments and make other choices that increase the burdens of my job.
So – you get back at them by offering them extra attention.
Helping them grow by seeking productive ways to correct their behavior. Challenging their academic failures by offering help outside school hours. Addressing holistic problems by circling the wagons and bringing outside resources to bear (including guidance, administration, and parents in a cooperative effort to encourage growth).
I get back at that kid by helping him or her get past being that kid. In the end, we can both sit back and laugh at how hard it sometimes feels to be mature.” iamkuato
39. The Teacher “Lost” The Test
“Teacher got back at me by blatantly failing me.
I was not a model student by any means.
My grade for this particular class was probably around 55 before the final exam, which was worth like 40% of the total grade. It’s not that I didn’t understand the material, its that I would usually lose a point for forgetting small details, most of which had to do with very specific formatting requirements (i.e. formulas needed to be underlined, answers had to be in a box, etc…). I remember failing more than one exam where I had gotten all the answers right.
Anyways, I aced the final. I had studied and practiced and was pretty damn sure I had gotten 100%.
However, my final grade for the course ended up being 59%. I went to see the prof and asked to see the final, so that I could see what I had done wrong. Turns out she only corrected half of it. The part that was corrected was perfect. She said it was an accident and that she would finish grading that afternoon. When I came back the next day, she had “lost” it.” thedudey
38. Teachers Always Get The Last Laugh
“I have been teaching in Asia for a while now. This was during my 3 years in South Korea. I had this class of 3 middle school boys.
It was one of my favorite classes, but they could be little sh*theads sometimes. One day they wouldn’t listen or work, they kept speaking Korean (not allowed in my class) and one kept throwing eraser bits at my face.
So with 15 minutes left, I gave them the silent treatment. I just opened my schedule and made random notes. At first, they just started drawing on the board and having fun, but soon they were scared and tried to get my attention. When the bell rang I grabbed my stuff and left.
The next time I taught them I walked into class and they had written “Sorry Teacher!” On the whiteboard and were all bowing to me.
It was adorable and I miss that class.” Rabiwimps
37. Straightforward Approach – Good Thing They Can All Laugh About It
“I don’t know that he didn’t like her, but my teacher had a pretty funny reaction for one of my classmates in middle school.
She would not stop whining and it was starting to get really annoying. The teacher casually went over to his desk, said he had something for her, and flung a tiny object right into her lap. It was a baby’s pacifier. The whole class lost it and fortunately, she took it pretty well. The whining eased up for a while after that.” queenofthegrapefruit
36. Kids Say The Darndest Things
“Wasn’t because I didn’t like him, but was just annoyed in the moment.
I was doing the admittedly annoying thing of holding up the class to wait for the straggler(s) to get their sh*t together.
A kid at the front of the line said something along the lines of “if you make me miss my bus, I’m gonna whoop you.”
Instead of writing him up, reprimanding, or ignoring him, I just turned to him a bit and said, ‘Really? You think you could take me?’
He was very small for a 5th grader. I was 6’0” 220.” take_a_bath
35. Want To Mean? Well, We’ll Just Have Fun Without You
“This kid was/is a sociopath. Would purposefully do things to hurt other kids emotionally.
Lied constantly, including to his mother in front of my face and when called out on it, the mom laughed.
She always defends his sh*ttiness. He even accused my amazingly patient, super sweet friend of slamming him against a wall the year she had him.
Anyway, in 17 years of teaching, he is the only child I have even remotely come close to hating. After several months of his awfulness, I started waiting for days he was absent to do extra special lessons and activities that were extremely fun, just so he’d miss out on them. Then when he came in the next day, I’d have the kids write in their journals what they learned about and what they enjoyed about the activity just so he would know he missed it.” QuickWitQueen
34. Not In School, And Not On The Street
“My dad, who was a history teacher, was a pretty laid back teacher.
Popular with the students, who usually did well in his class. Though, because this was a school dealing with some of the more disadvantaged and problematic areas of the city, he was experienced with pupils being jerks and calling him names (It’s an all boys school). He could take it in the classroom, and of course, would tell the pupils off in the right way. He very rarely raised his voice.
One weekend, my dad was entering his house when one of his pupils saw him and called out: ‘Hello Sir! You wanker!’
My father marched across the street, grabbed the boy by the lapels, slammed him against the wall and said, ‘You can’t call me that in school.
You certainly can’t f*cking call me that in the street.’
Needless to say, the boy never called him that again.” Jonnydodger
33. Who Knew A Kazoo Could Be So Sly?
“I didn’t mind the student but his parent wouldn’t return some forms I needed signing. It was his IEP (Individualized Education Program) which was made at THEIR request, so the fact that they wouldn’t sign and return it so he could receive the services THEY were convinced he needed, drove me mad.
Now, someone had donated some kazoos to be given as treasure box prizes; which I had laughed at and put away. However, I decided this kid deserved to have a kazoo.
I put yet another reminder slip in his homework folder and sent him home with the kazoo (with full permission to tell his parents exactly who he had gotten it from).
The IEP was returned signed the next day.” emera_leigh
32. Students Are To Do Their Own Homework, Not Their Parents
“I once caught a student turning in essays I knew her mother was writing… and then her mother blatantly plagiarized an essay. As an opportunity to make up the assignment for a 50% grade, the student (ie mother) had to write a 10-page essay with 15 academic sources (the original was a 3pg essay with 3 sources).
I knew the mother would slave-away at the thing, and she did. I can’t stand parents like her.” WordCounselor
Another User Comments:
“We had a student that was borderline special ed. He wasn’t very bright and it wouldn’t surprise me if he was in one or two classes to help him out. But one day before class started, it was only myself, my friend, the student in question, and the teacher in the room. He says “Hey guys, did you get your project done? My mom was up late last night finishing it, it looked really hard!” The teacher was a really sweet woman who just had a bubbly, infectious energy and just had this dumbfounded, incredulous smile on her face and said “SCOTT! You aren’t supposed to say that in front of me! Jeeeez…alright, c’mon, come with me.” As she walked by us with Scott in tow, she just gave us this wide-eyed, smiling sigh at us like “Can you believe this?” My friend and I couldn’t help but laugh through our sh*t-eating grins.” Kamagamaga
31. This Teacher Had To Drop To The Floor To Prove a Point
“Recently, one of our students was throwing a big tantrum (on the floor, kicking, screaming, biting, spitting, you name it) so after over an hour of it, I finally said, “That’s how you think we act in the classroom? Fine.
I get to act that way too.”
Before the student could respond, I dropped to the floor and started kicking and screaming. It stopped their tantrum, and I didn’t have any issues with them the rest of the day.” TaxationisMemes
Another User Comments:
“I was a preschool teacher for over a year and there was one student that would scream constantly. He could communicate just fine, but would scream bloody murder for attention/to get his way. Eventually, the teacher started screaming just as loud every time he finished screaming. I was fairly new to the job when I witnessed this and it freaked me out lol.
I’m still not sure if I agree with the teacher doing that, but it definitely made the kid stop.” juicervose
30. Pens Are For Mature Audiences Only
“Had a kid steal my pen once. Kids at my grade level don’t use pens yet, and the pen was the exact same brand, style, and color that I always use (I teach in a small school and no other teacher uses that exact pen). The kid said that he “found it in the hallway.” He knew that I couldn’t prove that he stole it, so I just ignored him and went on with the lesson.
Fast forward 10-15 minutes and I hear a shout from him. He had been chewing on the pen and it leaked all into his mouth. He then tries to wipe it out using his (brand new) shirt. Shirt gets completely ruined. I couldn’t help but laugh at the ridiculousness of the situation.
His sister is a year younger than him and couldn’t wait to tell me the next day that the boy got his rear end tore up for ruining his new shirt. For the next month or so, whenever he didn’t have a pencil, I would offer to let him use one of my pens.
He never took me up on the offer.” Honkey_Mccracker
29. Some People Just Don’t Read Emails
“As a TA at large public uni, teaching chemistry…I reminded my students several times, each semester, and put it in the syllabus – you can email me 24/7, but I will only respond between the hours of 7:30 AM and 10 PM. You need to work on things in advance. If you email me at 10:15 PM and expect an answer on the thing that’s due tomorrow at 7:45 AM, it sucks to be you, since your lack of planning is not my emergency.
Every damn semester I’d have a handful of idiots that would throw fits and repeatedly email me after my cutoff hour (as in, WHY AREN’T YOU ANSWERING ME?!?? YOU’RE SUPPOSED TO ANSWER EMAILS type of responses).
Every damn time. So for any email that I got after 10 PM, the question that got asked would get read out loud (with no names) in the next class period, which was often after the assignment was due, to get answered by the rest of the class. After a few times of hearing their classmates ask why the question was even asked, the impatient students in question would usually get the hint.” feykitty
28. She Figured Out A Way They Could Both Speak The Same Language
“Mom was a history teacher.
Get a new student mid-year from Mexico named Alberto. Tried giving him schoolwork assignments, call on him, he always replied “No se.” which means “I don’t know” in Spanish.
Frustrated by weeks of this, my mom vents to other teachers on her team about how the kid could possibly get a grade if he can’t speak English, and they are all stunned. “Uh, Mrs.XXX, Alberto speaks English. He’s been fooling you.”
Embarrassed she gives him an assignment the next day and he pulls the same stunt, “No se”. She takes a giant red marker and draws a huge F on his paper that takes up the whole page. Looks him in the eye and says, “Do you comprende now?”
Rest of the year he was an A student in there.” Americapsycho
27. They Played Jokes On Each Other
“I was a volunteer assistant teacher for first graders like 7 years ago when I was in high school.
I had one student who was one of the smartest in the class but was also really mischievous and kinda mean. My favorite kid by far (sorry in advance that this doesn’t exactly answer the question cause I didn’t dislike the girl at all). She was always doing stuff like trying to read out of the book I was holding while I was giving her a makeup test from that book. Not that she needed to cheat, but just to be a little sh*t.
One day since my “seat” was the table behind her at the back of the room, I just started taking her in-use pencil and just hiding it behind me whenever she’d look away.
It went on for about an hour until she was digging through her pencil case in confusion and looking under her desk cause she knew she had to have been writing with something but her stuff was just magically disappearing. It didn’t take her long to realize it was me and she turned around and was absolutely livid, so I just smiled and gave her back a bundle of like 10 pencils.” asknotthesparrow
26. And The Award For Most Passive-Aggressive Teacher Goes To…
“I had a piece of sh*t student who made fun of the disabled kid in class, stole from people, and just generally made the school experience harder for all her classmates.
Her parents didn’t help, the principal got sick of her, and it was elementary school so there wasn’t much else available.
So I gave her the broken candy cane for the Christmas cards our class makes every year. And the lopsided Valentine cookie. And the squished milk carton for our marigold project.
All year. She always got the crumpled, broken, worst option.
Petty, unprofessional, but boy did it feel good at the time.” NotAnotherWhatever
25. He Took Away His Student’s Toy
“When I was teaching, a disruptive kid got his PSP (Playstation Portable) out during class one day. I naturally confiscated it until the end of class.
Then he did it again. And again. During this semester kid had several written reprimands and was on thin ice with his parents. Around the 5th-6th time he did it, I told him I was forced to write him up for it. He begged me not to. So I didn’t, and I took the PSP home and played Lego Batman that night. And the next night. I kept it for a week I think. He never took it out in class again…”LWZRGHT
24. Nobody Likes A Cheater, Especially P*ssed-Off Teachers
“My stats professor said he saw a group of really talkative and distracting kids doing well, and he thought it was fishy.
He looked at the tests and saw that they were all the same answers, then he looked at the seating chart and noticed that they could all look over each other’s shoulders to the front of the class where the smart, quiet girl sat. Solution: Give her a different test. Only her. When he handed back the tests, he told everyone who got under a certain grade, like a 50% to come see him. Each student got like a 10% or something. When they were alone, he basically said, “Well, this is your punishment for cheating. Don’t do it again.” I thought that was awesome.” YisThatUsernameIsTaken
23. This Teacher Knew They Were Cheating, So He Divided The Marks Right In Two
“These two girls in my econ class were cheating all the time.
They turned in this paper on the Federal Reserve that didn’t get picked up with the plagiarism checker but they both turned in the exact same paper as each other. I told them you guys did a great job on this paper, you get 50%, and you get 50%. In retrospect, I shouldn’t have done it in front of the class.” [deleted]
22. Always Remember To Cover Your Bases With A Detailed Daily Entry
“Not secretly, but I learned to take copious notes and have a file on every student. Lazy students will often try to throw the blame on the teacher.
I had two students request a meeting with the Dean of Students to discuss my unfair grading, and I showed up with a stack of evidence.
Every substantive in-person interaction was documented on the front of the file, and I included copies of every email and note on the inside.
There’s nothing more embarrassing than coming face to face with your own laziness and being unable to wriggle free.
They started paying attention after that.” VestigialTail
21. One Lazy Mistake Potentially Ruined This Students’ Entire Career
“I know of a story from my law school days. Apparently some student was brazen (or stupid) enough to copy a passage from the professor’s textbook and paste it into his final exam essay and handed it in as an attempt to pass it off as his own.
The professor recognized the passage, but wasn’t 100% certain it was a complete copy/paste job until the professor saw citation numbers in the text that weren’t accompanied by any footnotes. So, the professor checked his book and the idiot student had failed to delete the citation numbers, even though the student didn’t include the footnote citations themselves.
The professor confronted the cheater about it and the cheater wouldn’t confess, so the professor reported the cheater to the state bar association and now the cheater probably won’t be admitted to practice law.” UniverseChamp
20. She Took Full Advantage Of Her Students’ Altered State Of Mind
“My favorite English teacher once led a discussion about Vietnam war novel “The Things They Carried” into a discussion about drugs and paranoia in order to screw with the dude that always showed up to class high.
She didn’t look at him ONCE- just kept saying stuff to mess with him (while, might I add, actually leading a very interesting conversation about drug abuse in Vietnam). I was sitting across the room from him and he looked like he was dying.” Modspot
19. By Pretending Not To Listen, This Teacher Gave This Bully A Taste Of His Own Medicine
“High school teacher here. Had a little jerk of a kid we’ll call Anthony. Complained about everything, did no work whatsoever, talked sh*t about everyone, made fun of kids with disabilities, you name it. And, of course, he was always the first to start shrieking that he was the victim in every situation, everyone was against him, how come he always got picked on and so forth.
Now, in my teaching career, which has spanned the better part of a decade so far, I’ve taught more than a thousand kids. Plenty of those have been ‘bad’ kids. The thing about bad kids, though, is they’re usually bad for fairly simple reasons. Stuff’s going on at home. Unmedicated or undiagnosed mental illness. Trauma in their past. Hell, maybe just lonely. If you pay attention, you can find out why almost any kid is acting out.
That said, out of 1000+ kids, I’ve encountered maybe ten who are genuinely broken people. You could call them sociopaths. No trace of empathy, no trace of conscience or even inner life.
People who basically exist to serve their own desires, exclusively, and have no compunctions about how they might most quickly realize those desires.
Anthony was one of those kids. The worst thing about him was his constant tendency to immediately crap upon anything that anyone else had put effort into, including my lessons. We would nearly have these very vulnerable, tender moments in the classroom – where kids were talking about big, important issues and really growing intellectually in awesome and uncomfortable ways – and then Anthony would call them gay or whatever else.
One day, this girl Patrice – an incredibly sweet girl, sensitive, with an artist’s heart – is sharing something in class for the first time.
Visibly nervous, shaky voice.
Anthony, of course, begins making fun of her hair, her glasses, her face. Loud enough that it’s plausibly a whisper, but loud enough so that we can all hear what he’s saying. I start walking toward his desk but am interrupted when Patrice very, very calmly says, “f*ck you, Anthony.”
The entire class was dead silent. This girl never spoke, let alone swear, and she said it with such self-control. Everyone’s eyes are on me, waiting for me to react.
Anthony starts screaming, “DID YOU HEAR THAT? SHE SAID THE F WORD! YOU ALWAYS GET ME IN TROUBLE WHEN I SAY IT, THIS AIN’T FAIR…”
I say “Huh? I didn’t hear anything,” turn back around and continue the lesson.
A few kids cheered. It felt really good.” arthur_figgis
18. After This Giving This Kid An Ultimatum, It Ended Much Better Than Either Of Them Thought It Would
“I taught math last school year at a high school.
There was this really snotty disrespectful kid in my class. He was a senior and he quickly decided the class was beneath him and stopped coming.
The way I approach grading is half the grade is attendance and participation. I feel like I can teach any kid math and help them get really good at it as long as they come to my class and do what they’re supposed to.
The other half of the grade was going to be their comprehensive final.
Guess who comes into my class one week before finals with some sob story about how he needed me to pass him for blah blah reasons. Yeah.
So I tell him ‘OK here’s the deal. Half your grade is attendance and participation. Half is the final. That means you can’t get more than a 50% right now. However, I also don’t fail anyone that gets at least a B on my final. If you were able to learn the math without being here listening to my spiel every day, fine, you pass.
Of course, there was no way this guy was going to pass my final. I was teaching trigonometry and he couldn’t even do basic algebra worth a darn. Given his attitude toward me, I have to admit I enjoyed this thought. Passing my class is SOOO important to him a week before finals, but not important enough for him to attend my lessons. Justice = served.
So he says ‘What am I gonna do I don’t know the stuff?’ So I tell him. ‘OK. I have a review here of all the types of problems that will be on the final. It’s what we are working on all week.
You come in every day and do your best and if you need extra help I’ll help you at lunchtime and you can try to pass my test. Either that or you can just give up.’
Of course, he realizes it’s futile and gives up right? No. He actually comes in, works hard and spends every minute of every lunch in my classroom getting individual attention. And he gets an A on his final!
When I grade his test and he sees he got an A his eyes actually tear up. So I point to the test and say ‘Look at that math! That’s some hard damned math.
Most people can’t do that math but you know what? You can! I wonder how many other things you can do that other people told you couldn’t do. That you told yourself you couldn’t do!’
He agreed and thanked me profusely for all my help and for not letting him take the easy way out. I don’t think I’ll ever teach a kid a more important thing than that.” Unholy_VI
17. This Teacher Made Up The Exam Based On A Four Hour Tour…That Some Kids Skipped
“My Abnormal Psych (a 400 level class, so you would assume people in this class were interested in the field) had us visit a local homeless shelter.
This was an accelerated night class so classes were 4 hours long. She arranges for us to go during our normal class time. A few people in the class felt it was dumb or a waste of time and bailed just as the tour was starting. The Final exam for that class was about 4 questions that were VERY easy to answer if you stayed for the whole tour and absolutely impossible if you did not.” TollBoothW1lly
16. This Teacher Got His Student Expelled And Regretted Nothing
“I was an English adjunct for a few years — my favorite story involved a kid that I caught cheating.
She was probably my least favorite student in class. She would spend the whole class obviously distracted, either texting, or trying to subtly talk to her group of friends (they all sat next to one another in the back of the room). I could tell that they thought they were being sly, but I had a policy of basically not giving a hoot what you were doing as long as you weren’t annoying your neighbors.
Anyway, they all put the minimum effort into the class. None of them gave a crap, and I’m pretty sure none of them really deserved to even be in college.
Eventually, they started to annoy me, and I had to constantly stop class (this is in COLLEGE) to shut them up. But hey, they were passing (barely) so they didn’t care.
One of these girls submitted an essay to me right before spring break. And… well, it was obviously plagiarized. How obvious? It was literally a sample essay from a grammar workbook type website online.
I failed her for the assignment, gave her the usual plagiarism “I-caught-you” speech, and reported it per department rules. At this point, she could still pass, but she’d have to be perfect.
Right after spring break, another assignment was due.
Guess what? Yup! She plagiarized that one, too. So I set things up to “catch” her, called her in after class, and told her what I’d found. Her response? Well, she didn’t plagiarize as she DIDN’T. WRITE. THE. PAPER.
‘I didn’t write it. My friend did.’
‘…you realize that’s plagiarism, right?’
‘No, I didn’t write it.’
I explained to her that she had just admitted to double plagiarism, as not only did she not write her paper, but the person who uh, ‘wrote’ her paper didn’t write it. She apologized and asked for another chance. I had to stop myself from laughing. I asked her why she thought she deserved one after I had just caught her cheating less than a week prior.
She look dumbfounded and went into a rant about how college isn’t fair and how I’m too hard (for the record: we only had 4 800-word papers in this class).
She also thought she deserved credit for plagiarizing the paper (her story changed halfway through) from two different websites.
I reported it to the department, which triggered an academic trial. A trial is exactly what it sounds like. We both sit in a room, in front of the dean, a council of professors, and a student representative. They hear the case, and then your fate is decided.
If you show up, you usually can prevent yourself from getting kicked out of school, as you can basically say anything and they’ll feel sorry for you.
The one thing you can’t do is not show up, as that essentially means that I have free rein to make you look like an a*s and get you expelled.
Welp, in class the day of the trial, all her friends were in class talking (loudly) about how they were going to write about how crummy of a professor I was on our reviews. Because I did my job, basically.
I went in that day and — surprise! — she didn’t show up. I had images and comparisons between her paper and the site she copied her work from. I had detailed accounts from other students about how she was disruptive in class.
I had copies of my syllabus that outlined exactly what plagiarism is. I had a recording of what she told me during our last conversation. She was expelled.
I still have the letters her friends wrote (I received the “feedback” at the end of the year, all anonymous, mind you) in an envelope. One of the letters is a page long run-on sentence that says no one liked me and that I was the worst professor ever. The other is basically identical. I only taught for two years, but these were the only two negative “reviews” I ever received. All because I just wanted to teach and not have people plagiarize in my class.
Before I left, I checked up on both students. Both dropped out. Both had plagiarism charges on their record. Screw them. I hope the three of them are still complaining about how hard college was somewhere because they couldn’t handle writing 800-word essays.” lolastrasz
15. She Gave Her Students An Ultimatum That Would Either Have Them Go To The Office…Or Bathroom
“A lot of the guys in my high school would dip during school (chewing tobacco). Most of the teachers would just roll their eyes, tell them to spit it out and confiscate the rest. A couple of teachers that were known for punishing teens who were dipping and would go as far as suspending them for it.
One of those teachers enjoyed messing with her students. If she realized you were dipping, she’d give you an out. You could either admit to dipping and get sent to the office for disciplinary action OR you could drink from the spit bottle that you were pretending was a Coke. I saw too many classmates try to avoid punishment by taking a big swig, only to rush off to the bathroom to vomit. Can’t say they didn’t know the risk before they walked in though.” nitarrific
14. In This Account, The Tables Are Turned And The Student Gets Back At A Nasty Teacher
“Not a teacher, but a student who got back at ‘that teacher’.
In my sophomore year, I transferred to a small Catholic high school because I was bullied pretty badly at my public high school. I was very eager to show my teachers I would work hard and my parents that I wanted to improve my grades.
English has always been my strong suit, so I was excited when my English teacher assigned us four essay questions on the first day for the Scarlet Letter. I started to work on them from the moment I got home, to the moment I went to bed. I was very excited and knew my answers were very in-depth and delved into the symbolism that Hawthorne is famous for.
(Let me note that I used absolutely no outside sources for my answers, only my mind, and the book).
When I got to class, I excitedly handed them to Mrs. Leary and couldn’t wait till she graded them. Silly me…
She handed them back with my answers crossed out and the word PLAGARISM written in huge red letters across the top. I was heartbroken. I didn’t know what to do, so I said nothing. In the next three assignments, the same thing happened.
On the fourth, I came out of school crying. My aunt was picking me up that day because my mom had a meeting.
My aunt was p*ssed. My aunt is a very cool lady, and gets along with everyone, but when she gets mad, hell hath no fury.
She marched into the school and reamed Leary out. Leary acted all apologetic blah, blah, blah.
So the next assignment, I was happy to get back. But guess what? SAME THING HAPPENED. Big red X’s and at the top: ‘Read and define the word PLAGARISM.’
So, it became clear I needed to take matters into my own hands. I asked what the problem with my paper was and she said, ‘It was obviously beyond your reading comprehension level.’ So I said, ‘Listen, lady, I don’t know what your reading comprehension level is, but I’m not going to dumb my work down for you.’
I was sent to the principal, whom I showed all 5 assignments.
She got quite a kick out of it…
I guess she was awful to everyone because she ended up getting fired.
Screw you, Mrs. Leary.” rissaroo0o
13. She Was A Super-Cool Teacher Who Recognized This Jerk Needed To Be Taught A Lesson
“Not a teacher but I’ll share my teacher story. In high school, I had a locker sandwiched in between a classroom and a wildly obnoxious jerk-off’s locker. He would always swing door all the way out, meaning that I couldn’t get into mine, then get really p*ssed off and annoyed when I moved his door to get into mine. If I asked him to do it, he’d laugh and scoff at me.
The teacher on the other hand, was a dream. Hippie all the way, I’m pretty sure she smoked something on her off time, always smiling and damn good with kids. She would stand at her door and watch him do this, and knew that I resented this kid, and I’m pretty sure she did too.
So skip to the end of the year. We’re doing a final paper that’s worth 60% of the grade. She takes the class down to the computer lab and gives everyone time to finish their papers if they haven’t already. I had already done mine, so I was sitting around reading, when she comes up, taps on my shoulder, and points at a*shole student, and tells me, giggling, ‘Hey, look at Quinton.
He’s copying his paper. I’m gonna give him an E.’ and walks away.” hippiefur
12. Rewarding Those With Good Behaviour Is One Way Of Getting Back At Those Who Skipped Class!
“This one wasn’t directed at one kid but it has the same kind of idea. It was senior ditch day and I asked my dad if I could stay home. He said hell no go to school so I did. Of course, my senior English class is empty. Only like 5 kids showed out of a class of 30 plus. So my teacher says ‘Alright… Since I figured no one was showing up today I scheduled a pop quiz.’ I’m thinking damnit… Could this day get any worse… I’m here having to take a quiz while all my friends are at the beach.
I get the quiz and the first question reads ‘What is another name for soda?’… What the hell… The next one says ‘____ goes the weasel’. It was literally a ‘pop’ quiz. It was the weirdest school exam I’ve ever taken.” CinemaSpence
Another User Commented:
“One of my teachers told me in university his class was given a pop quiz the day before spring break. Less than half the class was there and the quiz was just written your name on a paper and turn it in.” dank_memes
11. This Teacher Knew That The Best Life Lessons Were Often The Hardest To Swallow
“Let them fail.
I had a student that no matter how many conversations I had with her, with her councilor, with her parent, etc, she refused to do assignments or turn anything in.
She was of the opinion that my class was throwaway, an easy A.
So I let her fail. I stopped reaching out to her for the last six weeks, and let her build her own gallows for her GPA. She came to me half panicked two days before the final, begging for extra credit, anything.
‘But, I’ll fail.’
‘Yeah, you will. The real world works like this- you don’t do what’s required of you, you fail. I tried to help but you never cared.’
‘I can’t have an F!’
‘That’s really not my problem at this point. Take it up with the principal, kid.’” IronBoomer
10. This Teacher Lured His Students Into A False Sense Of Security Only To Ridicule Them Afterwards
“My friend was a professor for years.
He told me this one last year:
A group of lousy, talkative students started acing the weekly tests in the seminar periods. We’re talking marginally passing to a sudden spike of consistent 100%’s. He figured out that they had a friend who was in an earlier seminar period in the week feeding them the questions before they took it themselves.
He emailed them, and instead of busting them, asked them to teach the whole class on their newfound study habits. He made them all stand in front of the class and ‘teach’ how they study. The whole lesson was a load of bull and was plainly visible to everyone.
Then for the next test, he rotated the questions for their seminar time. The whole group got 0/10 across the board.
He emailed them again and plainly said, ’Guess those study habits need some tweaking, huh?’” rand846
9. Even his Favourite Teacher Couldn’t Get Him out Of This Pickle
“When I was in high school I was a librarian assistant at the elementary school that my mom taught at. There was this one little jerk who was always bullying this kid who was a little heavier set about his weight. I would always tell him to stop and he would for a bit, but the next day he would carry on.
One day I finally had enough and told him that he needed to go to the principal’s office and he responded with something along the lines of ‘I don’t need to listen to you, I’m strong!’ and then I knew that I needed to do something else. So I told him that since he is so ‘strong’ that for the rest of the class period (about 30 minutes) that he would have to stand in the middle of the room with his arms stretched out. Let me just say that it is more difficult than it sounds.
He took it as a challenge and walked his stupid smug face to the middle of the library and started holding his arms out.
It didn’t even take a minute for him to start lowering them, and I would turn to him and say ‘Yeah, you must be really strong’ sarcastically and he would lift them back up.
About 5 minutes had passed and then my mom walked into the library to see what was up. My mom and I chatted for a second and then she noticed the turd face standing in the middle of the room and asked what he was doing. The kid’s face went red immediately. I told my mom that he was bullying other students and was disrespectful. Turns out that my mom was this kid’s favorite teacher and he had no idea that I was her daughter.
He ran and started crying into my mom’s skirt and apologized, but my mom still took him to the principal. The rest of the year he was a little friggin angel.
Looking back, I don’t think I went about it in a good way, but I was 17 and had no tolerance for bullies since I was bullied a good bit in elementary – jr. high. I guess things worked out in the end?” yourbff
8. This Teacher Taught His Students Never To Snooze on Class Time
“One time there was this girl sleeping in my Calculus class. Well, my teacher walked over to his desk phone and says to the rest of the class, ‘Did you guys hear that ring?’ He proceeds to pick up the phone, nod his head and hangs up.
He wakes the girl up and tells her she’s needed in the main office, so she leaves. The entire class is super confused. 10 minutes later she returns and is like, they didn’t need me at the office. He says I know, but I hope that walk woke you up…
Another time, he was handing out a quiz that was an example AP Calculus problem. He ran out of quizzes early, which usually meant we could work in groups on the quiz. He then says, ‘But you know, Newton always had a trick up his sleeve.’ He unbuttons his sleeve and pulls out more quizzes.
That teacher had tricks.” GDE1990
Another User Comments:
“Haha, reminds me of my history teacher in high school. There was one kid that would fall asleep in class regularly, so after more than a few warnings, the teacher would start drawing on him with the whiteboard marker while still lecturing. One time he managed to color the half of his face green before the kid woke up.” UltimateAnswer42
7. She Thought She’d Get Away With A Perfect Presentation Scott-Free, But Was Sorely Mistaken
“Student story: I was in a university history class where we had to make a presentation. One girl who had been obnoxious all semester gave a presentation that was suspiciously articulate despite her previous behavior.
The professor stopped her in the middle of it and said, ‘Now you’re going to continue reading that essay, but I know you didn’t write it, because it was written by my friend Dr. _________. I expect you to make a new presentation for next week, but read us the rest of the essay please.’
She was stunned, and luckily somehow didn’t get kicked out of school… but unfortunately, I don’t think her conduct changed.” bbberlin
6. He Didn’t Know Who The Cheater Was, So He Gave Them A Tough Decision To Solve The Problem
“I taught a TCP/IP networking course at a university.
The assignment was to write a simple client and server in C. Circa 1992. They had to submit their code and I compiled it and tested it.
One submission had an error in a certain case, so I fixed the error to see if the rest of the cases worked. I graded the submission a 90 percent for something due to the one minor problem.
Marking another student submission I find the exact same error. Exactly the same variable names. I run the two submissions through Unix diff command and the only difference was the student name in the comment at the top.
I gave both students 45 percent. One complained. I told him the submission deserved a 90 but someone copied the work; tell me who the real author is and I’ll give them 90, the other gets zero and reported. They both accepted the 45s.” d_stick
5. He Punished His Thieving Student By Robbing Him Of A Trip Of a Child’s Lifetime
“A twelfth grader stole a bottle of water, then denied it, demonstrably lying, and got really super snotty and insulting when I called him out. A couple months later, he was devastated to learn he wasn’t allowed to go on the camping field trip with all the other seniors.
Like I’m going to chaperone hundreds of kids to Death Valley and take this lying thieving little jerk and be legally responsible for whatever crap he pulls? No way, Paul. You can sit in an empty classroom and watch PBS videos about the Lusitania while we go hiking and sit around campfires and sleep in tents and make bacon and pancakes for breakfast.” toddle
4. They Weren’t Actually Cheating, But The Dean Gave Them Quite A Scare
“This happened to some friends of mine when I was in college. Their professor gave the class the ability to use the plagiarism checker prior to submitting because he expected it to be within a certain range, so my friends they scanned theirs in, modified their assignment as needed then turned it in.
About 2 weeks later they got called into a closed meeting with their dean, and the disciplinary committee and their professor. Evidently they were flagged for turning in an assignment that registered a 100% on the plagiarism checker.
According to my friend the professor burst out laughing after they explained what happened and apologized and told the committee that he forgot that the gave his class access to the checker, but prior to that he said their whole team was sweating bullets.” Daggoroth
Another User Comments:
“I didn’t understand for a second and then realized it registered an 100% because they’d run their reports through and it saved them, hahaha.” Love_LittleBoo
3. He Caught Him Cheating and Gave Him Another Chance…And He Almost Didn’t Pass!
“I’m a stats teacher. He was getting D’s and F’s all year, but then somehow ACED a multiple-choice test, first time I ever gave it.
I didn’t realize it, but I had accidentally left an answer key at the front table which happened to be the answer key he saw and copied. I asked how he did so well and he told me, after he bragged to everyone else, ‘I just worked really hard this time’. OK, fair enough. Maybe he did?
So the next time around, I did the exact same thing but I left the same answer key at the front of the room, never moved it. He used it again and this time got a 0. I pulled him outside the class and said, ‘How did you go from 100 to 0?’ He was cool about it when he knew what I was getting it though.
‘Mr. Teacher, I have to come clean, I copied the first one and then tried to do it again.’ I said I know, and told him he could retake the 2nd test if he also retook the first test, which he did.
He passed each test by 1 point, but it was legit, so I was proud.” MEuRaH
2. He Beat This Cheater At His Own Game
“There was a kid in my class who ALWAYS was cheating on my tests and quizzes. I caught him several times and contacted the parents, but nothing was ever really done about it (aside from the fact that he got 0’s if I caught him).
I don’t think his mom ever really believed he was cheating as much as he was, and there were plenty of times I probably didn’t catch him. Once on the midterm, he missed the test. He came back the day I gave the kid their scores back which also had the answers, but not the questions. I saw him “sneakily” talking to his friends and they gave him the papers that had the answers on them. I didn’t say anything, but the make-up midterm has the same questions with all of the answer choices moved over by one letter. Little jerk got a 3% on a multiple-choice midterm.
I assume he must have read one question and then copied the rest from his friends. Justice.” teacherthrowawayyyy
1. This Student Was So Terrible, It Took The Combined Efforts Of The Entire Staff To Ensure Everyone Knew Her Awful Ways
“I’m a professor at a State University for the past 17 years and teach pre-health and pre-med students. I’ve many stories, both good and bad, but I’ve never felt the need to retaliate against a student.
Until one day, I met my Nemesis. This student wanted to go to medical school, though they were of very middling intellect and came off as socially inept and personally odious.
I and my class stood in her way, so I had to be shoved out of the way on her route to being a healer. She figured the best way to get ahead was to be the squeaky wheel, and b*tch about everything. In academia, if you complain enough about a class, we give you a high grade and send you up to the next poor bastard for you to torment. Rinse and Repeat.
So Nemesis went all out to find everything and anything to complain about:
Exam had 80 questions on it, syllabus said 75 questions: COMPLAINT. Lecture notes were released in a format that was based on PDF, but the student wanted PowerPoint (Hell, no): COMPLAINT.
Missed in-class questions on quizzes, and material wasn’t covered in lecture (readings, children? I assign them for my health?): COMPLAINT. Inappropriate language in lecture (anatomy class… “penis!” but always anatomically correct): COMPLAINT. I did not return her emails the same day she wrote them: COMPLAINT. Everything I did, said or thought about: COMPLAINT.
By the end, she had escalated these issues all of the ways to the top, and I got called into the Dean’s office. My administrators above me have worked with me for years, giving me no fear of a student “going over my head” with a complaint. But this student tried.
Dean: ‘Nevermind_It’ll_Heal, this student has sent more than a dozen complaints to the administration.’
Me: ‘Just a dozen? I was betting far, far more.’
Dean: ‘Normally we would let this pass as this student is known for doing this, and has even involved legal counsel in previous classes. But you have somehow exceeded her previous complaint record by a factor of 3, and none of her other instructors this semester have gotten one. She has singled you out for complaints, and some arguably appear to be about you specifically targeting this student. (Yeah, in clinical cases I replaced all of the patients’ names with her first name, even if the patient was a guy.
But her name was very common, and there were three other ones with that name in class.) So go easy, don’t antagonize her. Just ride it out, and be done with it.’ Me: ‘Thanks, Dean. Good talk, bro.’
My Nemesis kept it up. I gave her a higher grade than she deserved (which I believe was the whole point as she needed the grades for Med School).
Then I washed my proverbial hands. . . .
A year later, I was assigned to be the committee head of the faculty that create group letters of recommendation for medical school applications. And she submitted the form for our committee to create her recommendation packet.
Students can, and SHOULD, waive the right to read these evaluations. If you are afraid of what a professor will say about you, don’t ask them for a letter. My Nemesis made sure to point out to the committee in a formal letter that because of problems with ALL of the professors that would be writing letters, she wanted to make sure their letters were appropriate and of the correct tone and content before we sent them off. Therefore she would review them before approving them for inclusion in her packet.
Nobody wanted to drop the atom bomb on her and write a true letter as, you know, .
. . lawyers. And she would see all of these letters, as would her counsel before we sent them. So our hands were tied.
But one brave soul went around and solicited her letter-writers into creating sublime choruses of praise; these would be the letters you would expect to read to the Nobel Committee about Hawking, Einstein, Newton, and Feynman. We are talking about true works of art. Nobody would believe that a student with this background or MCAT score could get one of these eulogy masterpieces, let alone a whole panel.
And I included a note from the committee stating that the student had previously filed academic complaints against each and every professor that wrote her a letter, therefore these letters may not reflect her true academic potential.
We got our FERPA lawyer to check this with a fine-tooth comb, but our committee ‘had a duty in our committee recommendation letter to inform those reading the professors’ individual recommendations if there may be a mitigating circumstance or formal action that could influence the veracity and quality of the recommendations.’ The student didn’t have the right to see that part unless they request it later. After the letters have been sent out, unfortunately for them.
So she carpet-bombed the medical schools with primary applications; every MD, DO, and offshore school that existed got one. The cost must have been staggering, but with parents that can afford lawyers for their brat in undergrad, I am sure they footed the bill gladly to get her out of the house.
Within her application packet came those beautiful letters, and those three explosive paragraphs explaining that this student filed academic complaints against every letter writer, and did not waive the right to keep their letters secret.
It doesn’t take a genius on the admissions committee of each of these schools to read between the lines on this one, and drop that application in the trash before granting an interview.
She did not get one interview. More than 30 applications, not one school invited her to continue her application process.
That gets a professorial BOOOO-YAAAAAH!
And for those of you whose lives I may have saved by preventing her from becoming the most litigious and incompetent doctor imaginable, and screwing up treatment to you or your loved ones, You are most heartily welcome.” Nevermind_Itll_Heal
We’d like to think that these students definitely got what they deserved.
Remember never to be a cheater or get on a professor’s bad side – you might regret it!
Do you have a story from either a teacher or a student’s perspective on how justice was served? Tell us below!