Teachers go through a lot, but because they’re good at their jobs and they genuinely love kids (the good ones, anyway) they’re also really talented at sniffing out fraud. Cheating doesn’t go over well, whether it’s a grown-up or a child behind the fraudulent pen.
In these 17 cases, teachers knew right away one of the parents was doing the kid’s homework for them, so all that was left was the confrontation…
17. I have questions. Like…why?
12-year-old kid brings in a BEAUTIFUL galleon. All the other kids’ galleons look like they are cut out of styrofoam using a butter knife, or some kind of strange 50/50 amalgamation of cardboard and hot glue, and then there’s this kid with a wooden galleon, complete with rigging, cloth sails, a stand…after talking to him I finally get him to admit that his parents had gone to a shop and ordered a custom-made ship. What the heck?!?
16. They were just helping a little.
I taught elementary art classes for a few years, and a lot of time would have crossover lessons with certain subjects. One year we had the second graders do a project for their unit on Native Americans, where they had to make dioramas of a type of Native American house of their choosing, and then write a little two paragraph essay on who lived in that style of house and why it was built that way.
Most kids made Tipis or wigwams out of construction paper and birch bark and paper towel rolls. we had a few kids who were clearly getting help from their parents, but it was obvious the kid had input and done the essay. Standard stuff.
Then we had a kid come in with, I shit you not, a completely accurate model of Cliff Palace, Colorado. It was stunning.
Turns out, his dad was a sculptor, and his mom worked at our local museum, as a restoration expert.
15. She’ll never forget that moment.
Classmate of mine read out her homewrk to the class. Structural analysis of a small town in our area. She kept talking about the jufrastructure. Turns out her mom had witten the entire thing in cursive and the girl was unaware of the word infrastructure.
14. She knows your messy writing, kid.
Penmanship – no kidding, kid had the maid write it.
13. Come clean!
Not a teacher but in middle school I procrastinated as most kids do and forgot about project to make a brochure about a country. My parents stayed up all night helping me (doing the majority of it). Years later underclassmen would tell me that same teacher would pull my project out every year and tell them what hard work looks like.
12. Poor kid.
When the student came in crying while holding the project and when asked what happened she announced that she was frustrated that her mom did the whole project, it looked nothing like how she wanted it to, and wasn’t allowed to really do anything on it.
This wasn’t the first assignment that came in from this student that was clearly done by the mum but the student finally had had enough of having her education taken from her.
11. And he didn’t have a tutor.
Middle school science project, kid came in with a crude internal combustion engine, having previously failed science three quarters in a row.
10. Oh, that’s just cringey.
6th grade research project that ended in a 3 page paper. One kid turned in a 10 page paper. And it definitely wasn’t a bad attempt at plagiarism. It kind of felt like the mom was missing her own academic years.
9. The truth is a tough pill to swallow.
My god, this one student, she thought she was amazing, her parents thought she was amazing. She was easily the weakest student of the 35 in the cohort that year. She struggled to put together a sentence, she only achieved 3 GCSEs, failed her English and Maths, but still her parents acted like she the best of the best. The course I taught her in was 4/5 weeks of subject teaching followed by 10 hours in computer rooms to type up an essay, with the deadline Thursday at midnight. Thursday afternoon at 4pm this girl has wrote about 7 or 8 lines, all one sentence, that doesnt make any sense, easy fail.
Next morning I log on and look at the submitted work for everyone so I can start marking. Her work was the best 5 pages of work I’d ever had from any student. I immediately went to my colleagues who also taught her on the course, and not even halfway through the first page they both said there was no way this was her own work.
I pulled her aside and just straight accused her of having her dad do it. She denied it for about 5 seconds before just admitting it. I rang her dad and informed him that she had failed the work and that it constitutes academic malpractice, and so we could fail her for the whole unit which would restrict her overall maximum grade to a pass, which is equivalent to an E. He denied it, when I told him his daughter admitted it to me, he went on a tirade about how he is a doctor and how he knows exactly what is expected of his daughter at her age in order for her to get into university, he will choose what work she does, and I will mark what is submitted for her. I told him no, what we’re gonna do instead is just not let her complete work at home, so she will only be allowed to submit work that is seen by a teacher in class.
About a month later he comes to meet me in the college and tells me that he is pulling her out of college so she can resit 2 of her GCSEs, then she will have the 5 GCSEs she needs to go to university. I explained to him that you can’t go to uni with only 5 GCSEs as nowhere will accept a 17 year old without something equivalent to A-levels. Again he insisted he knew best and he’d checked and you could get into uni with 5 GCSEs or 3 A-levels, so she was gonna take the GCSE route (The minimum requirements for the course were that she had 5 GCSEs and 3 A-levels, not or). By this point this student and her parents were just too irritating to keep dealing with, so I spoke to my principal who told me that I’d already explained it once, and if he pulled her out the college that’s his decision, this way we don’t have to jump through hoops to get rid of her, we just won’t let her back next year when they realise. So, she left the college, she sat her GCSEs as an external candidate, failed, asked to be let back and was refused, haven’t seen her since.
8. One of these things is not like the other.
This discovery was a collaboration between me and another teacher
The student in question submitted an assignment that showed no cohesion or ability to connect ideas (Told me about how to ‘make’ detergent from kiwi fruit in 500 words, the task was a 1500 word assignment on a DNA extraction experiment) and then the same week submitted an A standard assignment to their psychology teacher with excellent flow, arguments and great conceptual synthesis.
7. The other kids know, too.
Obligatory ‘not a teacher’ but in grade 3 we had to build the classic volcano-that-erupts-bicarb-soda-lava. I did the entire thing myself, refusing help from my parents. I walked into class so proud of what I’d made and then saw everyone else’s- CLEARLY made by their parents… one kid’s even had fake smoke coming out of his, like bro we’re 7 years old, it’s ok.
6. Bless his heart.
English as a foreign language teacher here. During lockdown last year a student sent in a test that had much better work than he usually did. When I googled his words, sure enough, he had copied it by mashing the first part of sentences from one source to the second part of sentences from another source. It did at least make sense, but it was still not his work.
When I confronted him about cheating he said “I don’t think I cheated, cause my mom helped me with it and she wouldn’t cheat!”
5. Give me some of those pills.
Their grammar was magically perfect and they grew an intellect overnight.
4. They didn’t think ahead.
Not quite a parent per se, but in Kuwait, there’s an entire industry based around doing students’ projects for them — science, English, Arabic projects — whatever. Every project gets a big, beautiful billboard made by some Indian guy in a print shop.
It’s really easy to tell, too — you just ask the kid literally any question about the project.
“This word in the title — what does it mean?”
“Can you read it to the class?”
“Fumbles every single word”
“And what does it mean?”
“Uhhh… Like I just said.”
“Okay, can you summarize it in Arabic for the class?”
“(Says in Arabic to the class that he has no idea what the project is talking about)”
“Wow how long did you spend on this!?”
“I didn’t! I had someone else do it!
“…You’re not supposed to tell me that.”
Multiple students. For every project.
3. In what world?
The email from the parent: “I worked very hard on this essay and I think you’ll agree that if XXX had attempted it, it would have been of a much lower standard. Please score on the quality of the response not the authorship.”
2. Oh that’s just awkward.
I had a student hand in an assignment on google docs. Most was written by his dad. How did I know? His dad was logged in while writing it so it showed up on the edit history. The worst part is the dad is one of the assistant principals 😂
1. A dead giveaway.
Student couldn’t explain one thing from his homework.
Cheaters never prosper, y’all!
Are you someone whose parent would do their assignments? Share your story with us in the comments!