At Teacher Misery, I like to rant about bad students, bad administration, bad work culture…. But what about bad teachers?
Today, we’re talking about the worst teachers in the world.
Not everybody who gets into the teaching profession has a heart of gold and a deep passion for education. Some of them just have a deep passion for their own abject narcissism!
For every eleven good eggs, there’s one bad one to spoil the dozen. And that’s the theme of the day. Believe me, I’ve worked with some truly shocking humans, but even these stories of terrible teachers sent my jaw to the floor.
Consider this article one part inspo (to be better) and one part warning (to not do this). The rest is all hilarious.
Not all these teachers are strictly turdburgers. Some are just really dumb! But either way, let there be no confusion…
These are the 10 most HORRIBLE teachers. Ever.
The Top 10 WORST Teachers to Ever Enter (and Exit) the Profession
Ready for some zany and head-shakingly questionable stories about awful teachers? Truly, if there were awards for the worst teachers, these would be the candidates.
In fact, that’s a great idea! Consider this the Teacher Misery Awards for Horrific Teachers. And your prize?
A flick in the eye and exilement to Far North Alaska. Congrats!
#1 Most Mental Math Teacher: A Martial Arts Demonstration During Math Class
Recently, a 50-year-old math teacher was teaching a math class to fifth-graders at Brookside Elementary School in Norwalk, Connecticut. No one is quite sure how this math class turned into a martial arts course, but a spokesperson for the district did tell Fox News that such moves “were not a part of class instruction that day”. Perhaps she was calculating how many students she could place in a chokehold before losing her job?
Whatever the reason was, the teacher demonstrated several defensive holds during the class. She even demonstrated how to perform a chokehold using several of her students! Her demonstration was so effective that one of the students actually passed out, but fortunately, the student did not sustain any permanent injuries.
The math teacher was charged with strangulation in the second degree, risk of injury to a minor, and reckless endangerment. Unsurprisingly, she also “resigned” and will likely need to start looking for a job for FORMER teachers.
#2 Craziest Kindergarten Teacher: A Strong Deterrent
In 2021, a kindergarten teacher in Little Rock, Arkansas, ordered one of her students to unclog a toilet with his bare hands. The student had not clogged the toilet on purpose; it happened naturally. Yet the teacher told him to clean his waste and toilet paper out with his bare hands.
Right after the incident, the teacher admitted she was wrong and said she was only trying to teach the child how not to clog the toilet. Thankfully, she was fired soon after. But she isn’t the only one who gave this kind of directive to a student.
In 2014, a Washington state teacher also ordered an 8-year-old student to unclog a toilet with his bare hands. The teacher, who has been teaching at that district for 23 years, was reprimanded and forced to take a hygiene course but kept his job despite being one of the worst teachers ever.
If only somebody had told THEM.
Consider this a warning about the crippling teacher shortage and the lack of accountability it reinforces. It’s yet more evidence the school system doesn’t work, folks!
#3 Maddest Middle School Teacher: Just Doing Something Sweet
Ready for a grade-A middle school horror story? I am. ;)
One day, a middle school math teacher in Oklahoma wanted to “do something sweet” for 11 of her yearbook students. So she stuffed all 11 of them into her Honda Accord to take them to Walmart to get snacks. Two students rode in the front seat, seven in the back seat, and two 12-year-old girls rode in the latched trunk.
While on their snack run, two students stayed behind, perhaps questioning if riding in the trunk of an awful teacher’s car was worth it for snacks. At her termination hearing, the 10-year teaching veteran said, “This was a terrible mistake. I didn’t want to hurt anyone. I just wanted to do something nice.”
What could possi-blye go wrong!
I’m not sure what she was thinking… Personally, I wouldn’t say shoving kids in the trunk of your car counts as one of the qualities of a good teacher, but I’ll need more information about the snack selection before I make a final judgment!
#4 Nuttiest New Teacher: Plastered and Pantless
As tempting as it may be, most good teachers know to save the massive alcohol consumption for after school. But one teacher in Oklahoma was so overwhelmed by her first day of teaching at a new high school that she started drinking vodka and orange juice on the way to school.
The assistant principal found the new hire in an empty classroom with no pants or shoes on.
I suppose it’s better than the staff room, but still… What an interesting way to start a new school year!
#5 Stupidest Substitute Teacher: What Cool Teachers Do?
A substitute teacher in Oklahoma (seriously, what is up with this state?) said she was merely “trying to be a cool teacher” when she did a cartwheel in front of a high school class with no undergarments on. Yep! You read that correctly.
This teacher exposed her bajingo to the whole class. One student claims the teacher announced to the class that she wasn’t wearing any undies as well, meanwhile, the other kids just said it was a very strange day. When the cops questioned the teacher, she denied the incident but started to backpedal when they informed her that one student recorded it on their cell phone.
#6 Most Egregious English Teacher: A Teacher with No Filter
Even the most amazing teachers would like to say what they’re really thinking to students. But that’s one part of what makes them amazing teachers! They don’t.
Obviously, if we did that, we’d no longer have a job. A high school English teacher in Ontario was sick of holding in her true feelings during the 2015-2016 school year, and she just started to let it rip.
Dis gunna be good.
She was accused of telling students to grow some balls, lick her where she farts, telling them they look like a frumpy old lady, and a host of other inappropriate things that I can’t publish on my blog. For this, her teaching license was suspended for only two months. But considering she’s in the leagues with the worst teachers in the world, I’m not so sure she’ll find another job.
#7 Loopiest Lousy Teacher: Compelled by God to Mess with Skater Bros
A primary school teacher in Southern California was caught on camera pushing over teenage skateboarders, stealing their skateboards, and tossing them over a hedge. The teacher said God compelled him to do these things.
“When I stepped in, I felt compelled by a higher power,” the teacher told the Orange County Register. “Honestly, have you ever been grabbed by the Lord in a way you never thought you would or you could? That’s exactly what I’m testifying to, and I’m not speaking in hyperbole. I’m speaking right from the heart.”
While a lot of us find skater culture annoying, I’m not sure how many of us have felt compelled by the Lord to throw their boards over a wall. In fact, it might be a stretch to suggest the Almighty’s top priority is SoCo skater punks.
#8 Oh, Florida: Need Me Some Waffles!
A Florida math teacher allowed a 14-year-old to drive her to Waffle House because she was too drunk to drive. After consuming five beers at home, she craved some Waffle House and recruited her boyfriend’s 14-year-old son to drive her there. When police pulled them over, she had an open beer in her lap.
Can someone tell this lady about Uber?
#9 It’s Not Only the ‘Muricans: Stop! Don’t Write This!
It’s nice to know that not all the worst teachers in the world come from The Land of the Free (to Be Foolish). A teacher in England probably should have heeded her own warning from the adult novel she published called, “Stop! Don’t Read This!”. The high school English teacher wrote an ADULT novel using her students as characters.
She published the story on a website but took it down after word got out. It featured five of her students, several teachers, and the principal from her school. PLUS, she used their real names. The students in the story do all kinds of weird things, like setting themselves on fire, and she refers to two of them as “gorgeous Mr. Gay UK finalists”.
Funnily enough, the parents didn’t blame her (in contrast to the usual practice). When the teacher was fired, many students and parents protested to get her reinstated. One student said, “I can understand why parents might not be happy. But of the five main characters, all of us and our parents were fine with it. We like it. It helped us take school seriously.”
She didn’t get her job back.
#10 And It’s Not Only Teachers: Featuring… The Pooperintendent!
The Pooperintendent later attempted to sue police for publicly releasing this mugshot.
You might think that nothing could top the insanity of horrible teachers you just read about. Think again! Allow me to introduce you to the “pooperintendent”.
At a high school in New Jersey, staff members were finding human feces on the outdoor track on a daily basis. The school resource officer and other staff members decided to monitor the area, and they were all shocked to find that it was the superintendent of a neighboring school district who was pooping on their field. The superintendent pled guilty to one of the poops and tried to sue the police for releasing his mug shot.
Now, I’m a creative writer, but I never would have been able to dream up these teacher horror stories! Perhaps, in another life, The Pooperintendent was the hero we need. But in this one, he was just a fantastic final note to end on in our reveling in the stories about the worst teachers ever
Summing Up These Horrific Teachers (and a Note on Unions)
I daresay these awful teachers are a great example of the bad bananas that spoil the fruit bowl. However, it’s also an excellent cautionary tale of why we need teacher unions and why you should support them.
Unions can make it hard to eliminate bad teachers. But they’re a necessary evil. Let me make this very clear right away: though teachers’ unions have flaws and can make it difficult to eliminate bad teachers, they are essential.
- Protect basic fundamental rights for both teachers and students.
- They defend their First Amendment rights
- They ensure equal pay and fair working conditions
- Unions even fight for safe and healthy working conditions (like clean air and asbestos-free buildings).
- They also fight for smaller class sizes and adequate funding among a slew of other necessary changes.
There are many more reasons why unions are essential in education, so let me just conclude by reminding you to support them and let them support you. Find the right teacher’s union for you and JOIN IT. Without them, there would be a whole lot less good teachers and a whole lot more cartwheel-flashers and godfearing abusive manbabies.
We SHOULD all be on the same team. No one is going to have teachers’ backs except teachers.
So speaking of all those terrible teachers… I want to say that I have worked with hundreds of teachers, and the great majority of them are unbelievably dedicated, hardworking, and effective. Most of the time, they truly do have the students’ best interests at heart.
But many schools have one or two insane and/or completely useless teachers that they just can’t seem to get rid of. And it is essential for you to know that every other staff member in the building hates this horrible teacher because they make our whole profession look bad. They make the same amount of money as us (or in some cases much, much more because they are ancient and won’t retire), and yet they do nothing besides show up.
Actually, let me revise that. Some don’t even bother to show up but are masters at producing doctor’s notes and other excuses.
My point is simply to highlight how miserable it is for all of the fantastic, hardworking teachers to have to tolerate these nutjobs. So while you’re off supporting unions, support all the amazing teachers out there too, making the daily sacrifice and dealing with the stress of teaching to improve our the future of our kids and our communities.
And for the love of Bejeezus, please stick to teaching MATH in MATH CLASS. Leave the self-defense demonstrations to the gym teachers.
Actually… not even them.