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Embarrassing Relative Teacher

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Many kids have Amazingly Embarrassing Parents, but at least when they're at school, they can avoid that issue. They can have friends, be cool, and never let anyone know that their parents still pack their lunch for them. ...At least, that's when their parents or another embarrassing relative doesn't happen to work at their school. If they do, there'll be no end to the humiliation.

They may be given special treatment in class or when being disciplined, which makes the other students feel unfairly treated. Their relative may not be able to act professional around them, constantly making it clear they're related and calling them nicknames like "sweetie" in front of their friends, bullies, or, heaven forbid, their crush. Even if the relative is relaxed about the situation, teachers and other school staff often have a reputation of being generally uncool, and the kid won't want that association.

In Real Life, schools will usually make a point to avoid this because of worries over favoritism and professionalism (and concern for the child's social development). If a teacher has a kid in the school, they will almost always make sure to place that student in a different class. The exception is if there is only one teacher in the school for that class, which is common for non-core subjects such as Gym, Art, or Music class


Compare Homeschooled Kids, which is about parents teaching their kids at home. See also Teachers out of School.


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    Anime & Manga 

    Fan Works 
  • In the Discworld fics of A.A. Pessimal, set in the Assassins' Guild school, not even the Assassins are immune from this and issues arising are explored via the student society called The RATS - Relatives of Assassin Teachers and Staff. This group is officially sanctioned as a means for pupils in this unenviable position to get together and vent. Prominent members include Rupert Mericet, a senior boy whose distant relative is the feared alchemy master. In self-defence, Rupert pointedly tries not to be too good at Alchemy. He does, however, have the family tendency to mordant sarcasm.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Discussed in the movie Cellular. The teacher's son is worried that he'll have to have her as a teacher when he attends her school next year; she thinks it would be a splendid idea.
  • In the 1968 film Candy (based on a parody semi-pornographic book which was itself loosely based on Candide), Candy's father is also one of her teachers. In an inversion, he's the one embarrassed by her, even though the wacky hijinks that happen to her aren't her fault.
  • Beca's dad in Pitch Perfect is a professor at her college, and she denies the relation and wants nothing to do with him for the most part.
  • King Of Fighters: Takuma is the master and teacher at his Kyokugen Karate dojo, which his children attend. And when he's not being stern, he's quite the Bumbling Dad who tends to embarrass his daughter.
  • In Goosebumps, the main character is embarrassed about being the vice-principal's son.
  • In When Evil Calls, Samantha is the daughter of the principal and receives a lot of teasing and bullying because of it; including from her crush.

  • In The Princess Diaries, Mia's mum starts dating her geometry teacher, and eventually marries him, making him her stepdad. In something of a reversal, she initially finds it most embarrassing seeing him around the house, as it feels very weird to see a teacher comfortable in her home space like that, but it certainly makes things more awkward at school, too.
  • In Unforgiven by Lauren Kate, Lilith's mother does a lot of odd jobs, including working as a substitute teacher in her daughter's high school. Since she does not want to be seen favorizing her daughter, she is particularly strict toward Lilith, which leads to several embarassing situations.

    Live-Action TV 
  • In The Brothers Garcia episode "The Sub", Ray becomes a substitute teacher in Carlos and George's class. They simply pretend they're not related until Ray, out of habit, calls Carlos "Mijo" during class.
  • An episode of Drake & Josh has Josh being hired to teach Megan's 3rd grade class. He's so tough on the students that they direct their anger towards Megan just because he's her brother.
  • There's an episode of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air where Will gets Vivian to teach a Black History class at Bel-Air Academy, and there's a lot of this. Carlton assumes that he's going to get preferential treatment because the teacher is his mother, but it backfires when, at the beginning of the first class meeting, he calls her "Mommy" and she insists that he calls her "Mrs. Banks". The second they leave the classroom, though, she gets on him to straighten out his appearance. Will and Carlton goof off in class and don't take it seriously, so Vivian assign each of them to write a black history essay. Will and Carlton complain to Phillip that she's coming down too hard on them, all while she leads their classmates in Negro spirituals and they're eating it up. Vivian later explains that she expected the two students who are Black and asked for the class to take it the most seriously and wanted them to take history itself seriously.
  • Subversion: Full House had an episode in which Joey (who was Danny's best friend growing up and is really only viewed by the family as an uncle to his children) was hired to teach for Michelle's class. She and her friends expected him to let them play and goof around in class, the way he plays and goofs around at home. However, he insisted on acting very professional and enforcing discipline in the classroom (on top of Michelle not consistently being shown being disciplined to begin with), which led to Michelle getting angry because he wasn't acting silly here and giving her preferential treatment.
  • Hannah Montana: When their "Mamaw" becomes the school's new lunch-lady, Miley and Jackson find her to be a very humiliating presence; not only does she make it abundantly clear that they're her grandchildren, she also puts them in embarrassing situations, such as by giving them childish, musical backpacks. Miley and Jackson resort to getting her fired to stop the bullying they receive.
  • Teen Wolf:
    • New Transfer Student Kira has trouble making friends in Beacon Hills High because her father is the history teacher, and often embarrasses her without meaning to.
    • Subverted with Lydia — she's surprised at seeing her mother teach at the school, but is mostly cool with it.
  • On Girl Meets World, Corey is both Riley's history teacher and father. He goes out of his way to be an Overprotective Dad and ward off the budding romantic relationship between Riley and her crush, among other things Riley finds embarrassing.
  • On Hangin' with Mr. Cooper, Nicole attends a school where both her mother, Geneva and her older cousin, Mark Cooper, work. When Nicole has trouble with bullies, both Mark and Geneva step in. Mark's interference results in embarrassment but Geneva delivers the epic "Who's been messing with my baby?!" speech that sends the bully running for the hills.
  • On the fourth season of The Goldbergs, Beverly becomes a substitute teacher, much to the horror of her kids, who already get enough of her smothering at home.
  • Mr. Sweet, the science teacher and principal on House of Anubis, happens to be Eddie's father. With Eddie being a Jerk with a Heart of Gold bad-boy from America and Mr. Sweet being known primarily for his dorky nature, Eddie was all too eager to keep their relationship a secret. When Patricia accidentally reveals the truth to the whole school, The Freelance Shame Squad that greets them proves Eddie's fears correct, though the embarrassment eventually subsides as the two grow closer.
  • In the Small Wonder episode "My Mom the Teacher", Joan becomes the substitute teacher for Jamie's class. In this and later episodes, Jamie wreaks all the havoc he can at school when his mother is teaching, but she's just as strict in the classroom as she is at home.
  • So Awkward: One episode starts with Lily being horrified to discover that her amazingly embarrassing mum is the new substitute teacher, and will be teaching on 'the Psychology of the Teenage Girl' by reading from Lily's diary, Fortunately (?) this turns out to be another nightmare caused by Lily being Asleep in Class.
  • Subverted on Everything Sucks!, Kate Messner's father Ken is the school's principal who tends to give Kate the same treatment she's given at home, which causes humiliation for Kate.
  • In one episode of That's So Raven, Raven's mother becomes her class's substitute teacher. Though everyone else in her class actually thinks she's really cool and fun, Raven finds her presence humiliating, trying not to let her mother know how it's affecting her. At the end, her mother overhears her telling Chelsea and Eddie about how humiliated she feels, but though she's hurt, she understands that as a teenager, Raven can't have her mother getting in her way during school.

    Video Games 
  • Raine, Genis's older sister, teaches Genis's class in Tales of Symphonia. While he is embarrassed by her sometimes, it's never within the actual school setting, since school has no ruins for her to obsess over or cooking to ruin.

    Visual Novels 
  • Fate/stay night inverts this. Taiga (Shiro's legal guardian/aunt figure/moocher) teaches his class at school, but she's the one who gets embarrassed when they act too familiarly there. Shiro- not being your average teenager- is pretty chill about it.
  • Played with in Dream Daddy. Hugo is the English teacher at the local school and doesn't go out of his way to embarrass his son Ernest, but Ernest resents him anyway because being both a single father and teacher means Hugo has to be the ultimate authority figure in his life.

    Web Animation 
  • Early into DC Super Hero Girls, Barbara Gordon decided to start attending Superhero High as Batgirl. Her father, Jim Gordon, teaches classes at the school. Babs doesn't seem too embarrassed by her dad, however, he does call her cutesy pet-names and tries to coddle her despite her protesting.

    Web Comics 

    Web Videos 

    Western Animation 
  • The Simpsons: In "The PTA Disbands", Marge briefly became Bart's substitute teacher after he drove all the other subs away, and since Marge is Bart's mother he can't pull the pranks on her like he did with the other subs. She calls him "sweetie" in class.
  • In Martha Speaks, T.D. is embarrassed by the fact that his mother is vice-principal at his school. This is odd, as he usually never gets embarrassed.
  • Family Guy: Subverted, Meg expects this to happen when Peter becomes the principal. However, this changes when he stands up to her bullies. She then decides to take advantage of his paternal instinct and uses him to get revenge on other students who've wronged her.
    • Inverted more recently in "Connie's Celica", Lois becomes Meg's substitute music teacher, in this case, Connie insults Lois and makes her the target of humiliation.
  • American Dad!: Subverted in an episode where Francine becomes the school's guidance counselor. Steve notes how awkward it will be to go to his mom for counseling, but Francine tells him she's fine with it. This causes Steve to put aside his reservations and ask her for advice.
  • Leonard from Teacher's Pet has his mother as one of his teachers, which of course causes him no end of embarrassment.
  • The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius: In "How to Sink a Sub", Jimmy, Carl, and Sheen's parents become substitute teachers after Jimmy sends the real teachers into space. At one point, Jimmy's mom shows the class his baby pictures.
  • Pixel Pinkie: Nina's mum Fern, a New-Age Retro Hippie, becomes this when she substitutes for a teacher that Nina accidentally wished for to be on vacation in one episode.


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