Former Students Share 15 Dumbest School Rules We Can’t Believe Are Real

Schools are supposed to be places where learning and growth can take place, but unfortunately, there are sometimes silly rules that people can’t get their heads around.

The Dumbest School Rules

high school student

Many agree they can find something they don’t like about their former schools.

From dress codes to rules about what students can and cannot bring to school, here are some of the dumbest rules enforced by schools, according to social media:

1. No Jackets, Hats or Gloves

student wearing jacket

One person couldn’t wear winter clothing because they were considered “gang symbols.”

For reference, they lived in a small town in Wisconsin where there were no gangs, as claimed by the user.

“It was cold, even indoors, in the winter. But clearly, wearing warm clothing is something only gangs do,” they wrote.

2. No Salt and Pepper

salt and pepper

Salt and pepper were considered “unhealthy” seasonings, which were banned for use in the cafeteria.

However, they still sold Mountain Dew, according to the user.

3. If You Were Involved in a Fight, You Got Suspended

bully punching

It didn’t matter what role you played in the fight, whether you were the aggressor or just the poor victim who received a wallop for no reason.

“I got suspended once, not for throwing a single punch, kick, whatever,” the social media user recalled. “I got suspended because someone knocked the books out of my hand, and when I reached down to grab them, they punched me in the face.”

4. No Playing Cards

teens playing cards

Playing cards at lunch was prohibited because it ‘promoted gambling,'” one social media user commented.

5. Groups With More Than 4 Members Not Allowed

group of happy students

Students were not allowed to gather in groups of more than four people due to the fear of creating a ‘gang mentality,’ another user under the username Leehk1 shared.

6. No Backpacks

student saying no

In one user’s experience, students were prohibited from bringing backpacks or bags onto the school campus, requiring them to carry all of their belongings in their hands.

This posed a particular issue for students with lockers located further away from their classes.

7. Not Allowed to Use The Toilets

boy needs bathroom

In one user’s experience, the school had locked the only boys’ bathroom due to someone writing “hi” or something similar on the wall in Sharpie.

They kept the door locked until one of the boys wet himself, and his parents threatened to sue.

8. not Allowed To Play in the Snow

school bus driving in snow

At a grade school in Minnesota, where snow falls for half the year, students were not allowed to use the playground equipment when it was snowy.

They could be punished if they played with or approached the snow as it was forbidden. The commenter was punished for “sitting in the snow.”

All that was left to do during recess was mill around the blacktop for half an hour. Needless to say, students were not happy with this rule.

9. Record Restroom Use


At a private school in New Jersey, the faculty were required to record their restroom use by logging in and out on a Google Sheet.

This rule was likely implemented to ensure everyone remained productive during the working day and did not take too many restroom breaks.

10. Not Allowed to Say “OK”

posh school

In a Junior school in the UK during the 1980s, students were not allowed to use the word “OK” as it was deemed slang and inappropriate for their age.

Additionally, they were required to carry combs and handkerchiefs at all times and keep their hands out of their pockets as it was considered slovenly.

According to the user, the students were between 5-13 years old.

11. No Farting allowed

bad smell

At school, students were not allowed to fart in class. If they felt the need to do so, they had to ask for permission to go to the restroom but were often denied.

To prevent this situation from occurring, students were discouraged from farting at all.

12. Only Allowed to use a Small Piece of Toilet Paper

no toilet paper

One user shared their story about toilet paper rationing in 1997/98.

At a high school, the dean implemented a rule restricting students to only a few pieces of 1-ply toilet paper upon entering the girls’ bathroom.

Their ration would be cut down further if any was found on the floor. If they wanted to do more than pee and asked for more, they were told to save it for home.

12. Only Allowed to use a Small Piece of Toilet Paper

girl holding toilet paper

After some “unexpected bowel incidents” and period messes, their fellow classmates had to beg for more toilet paper.

The dean would pass some over the door but wouldn’t give more than she thought necessary.

Eventually, after a week of angry parents calling the school and the school board, this rule was overturned, and students were granted unlimited access.

As a celebratory display, some pupils TPed the dean’s car.

13. No Beaded Jewelry

child wearing jewelry

“No beads. Apparently, they thought beaded jewelry was gang-related?” one user joked.

This rule was deemed by many as completely ridiculous and unnecessary, as jewelry with beads was a popular fashion statement among young people.

13. No Jewelry Allowed

teenager wearing bracelet

Another person could relate to the “no jewelry” rule: “They outlawed bracelets because there was an article in a magazine somewhere saying they advertised what s**ual acts you were open for based on their color,” user billbaperky said. “Then someone tried to outlaw wristwatches for the same reason.”

14. Must Wear Student IDs

college students with student ids

In one student’s last year of high school, the institution issued a rule which mandated that all students had to wear their student IDs. If the ID was not worn, they were required to purchase another one immediately.

This was done as an effort to combat potential school shootings after previous incidents had happened in the same year.

The purpose of this was to identify who was a student and who wasn’t to ascertain any malicious intent, according to the user.

However, many of the previous shooters had been students themselves. Hence, the rule was met with some resistance.

15. Punished For Being Late By Making Them Even later

late for school

The students were punished for being late to class by the new principal’s “morning round-up” rule.

Anyone arriving to class after the last bell was required to go to the cafeteria and listen to a lecture about punctuality, causing them to be much later for class than necessary.

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happy school student

Some of these rules are very dumb, and it’s no wonder they sparked outrage among students. Many had been overturned due to student protests or school boards realizing how ridiculous they were.

This article The Dumbest Rules Enforced By Schools We Can’t Believe Are Real was produced and syndicated by TPR Teaching.

Caitriona Maria is an education writer and founder of TPR Teaching, crafting inspiring pieces that promote the importance of developing new skills. For 7 years, she has been committed to providing students with the best learning opportunities possible, both domestically and abroad. Dedicated to unlocking students' potential, Caitriona has taught English in several countries and continues to explore new cultures through her travels.

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