You have to be extremely careful when it comes to your email.
Sometimes if you’re a little distracted, you might accidentally attach something humiliating/embarrassing/funny, etc.
Take a look at these stories from AskReddit and remember to double check before you hit “Send.”
1. Not meant for you
“A “coming out” letter meant for her parents. For context, she was the first generation, Chinese girl from a very traditional family who now live in North America. This is a big deal. Very brave on her part. She sent it in the morning and did not show up to school. It was on the school email server so you could see if people had opened/read attachments. The letter was honest and beautiful, I was moved to tears in my office that morning.
Naturally, I was very concerned for her mental health because she likely put it together what happened because she did not send the required assignment by the deadline. This was extremely unlike her. It was a complete mistake because the email title indicated it was the assignment.
I quickly called the secretary to check her attendance right after the day started. Determined she was not in school. Then I called the counsellor and told her the issue, I knew she had a relationship with the student. I did as well through coaching the improv team.
We determined that it would be ok if I reached out to her. I had her phone number from previous trips/improv events and such, and I elected to call her from the counselor’s office and check in.
She was hiding at the coffee shop a few blocks from the school, in full panic mode. I was able to tell her how brave she is, how proud I was of her taking this step, and how I am here for her for support. I was nervous cause I am a guy, but at the moment, this kid needed some love. I have simply accepted that sometimes, as a teacher, you need to be a friend or loving parent. I believe in the modern day, educators need to be a lot more than just teachers. And we should be trained as such. I’ve done a bunch of extra training but it should be required for all teachers.
In the end, I ended up going to pick her up, gave her a big hug and we went for a pretty long walk. I had told my admin what had happened, they were in full support of me stepping out for an undisclosed amount of time.
We got her back to school after lunch, she sat with the counsellor and me. She met with us for a few weeks until she finally informed her family about her orientation.
It didn’t go great, but it didn’t go as bad as we thought. She is now a young scientist with a new partner, we connect for coffee from time to time.
She wrote me a letter on her grad day that I still keep when I need a reminder that I am not a terrible person. It helps me cry when I need it.
I am so happy to be a teacher (admin now), not because I teach science.
I love being in education for human moments. Those moments are what life is about.
For all you struggling students out there, you got more people in your corner than you think. It does get better. I’ve seen it myself.”
2. Little brat
“I had a student reply to a Remind message I sent with “I hate all this stupid sh*t she makes us do.” I called to his attention that he replied directly to me and he should come in Monday morning to speak with me about inappropriate messages and the proper use of school technology.
He came in and straight up DOUBLED DOWN. Told me everyone felt the same way and he was being honest and if “you were offended you should rethink some of the policies. It’s not my fault this class sucks.”
I calmly (it was a struggle) pointed out that, since this was an advanced class, his participation was entirely voluntary and, as such, his own choice that he needed to handle. One detention and phone call to Mom later (she answered with “What did he do this time?” – apparently this was not the first time a teacher had called home), he hands me an “apology” letter explaining, again, that this situation was entirely my fault.
Referred him to the office, and he basically did nothing but try to make the class miserable the rest of the year.”
“Wasn’t an accident, but a student of mine sent a paper she wrote to one of her other teachers about why she should be allowed to wear jeans to her final presentation. A full, three page, written paper to convince her teacher. It was epic. I still have a copy.”
4. At least he was cool about it
“I once sent my English professor a rough draft instead of the final draft of my paper. Like a very very rough draft. Which I had saved as “ENG201_f***face_milton.docx” so as to not mistake it for the final. He titled his email about it “F*ckface Milton: Three Reasons Not to Submit Your Paper at Two O’Clock in the Morning” and was real cool about it.”
5. Delete those notes
“Another reverse, but in undergrad I accidentally submitted my final paper with the notes on it from previous drafts. My drafting process, like most of my life, involves a lot of profanity. My professor was understanding but asked for clarification on whether I was calling the reader or the paper “a f*ckass little bitch.” “
6. A whole lotta memes
“Memes. Just so many memes. Like… an overwhelming number. They attached a zip file full of memes instead of a file folder with a couple of docs and a ppt for a project.
The memes were pretty good, though.”
7. That’s weird
“School therapy counselor here. I have a thing going on with several students where we text/email each other “wholesome” pics, usually motivational posts or cute animal photos just to add a little brightness to their day. There’s been quite a few incidents where students have sent me a weird photo, but nothing beats the time I saw a deep-fried clock with the Nazi symbol instead of clock hands hanging on the wall.”
8. Unexpected artwork
“I once sent my Molecular Science lecturer our paper in PDF (he wanted it in hardcopy) but we ended printing it out wrongly. Came out as single sided pages instead of double sided pages and he’s known to be very anal. We didn’t have time to reprint so we submitted that huge stack of papers and attached a well thought out sorry note instead.
Expected to get a complete grade off the next week when we were due to receive it but we got an A. Why you ask? His daughter drew all over our paper in a red crayon and he sent us an email feeling apologetic. It was kind of cute that we didn’t get a grade off thanks to his daughter’s artwork.”
“One of mine in middle school sent me what looked like a copy paste about how if you arrive at the train station at 10:00 tomorrow, you will get a free puppy and a balloon. My first thought was that she was getting catfished and she wanted to tell me about it.
I immediately confronted her in the hall and she laughed and said “were you thinking of going to the train station??” She had typed it out and thought it would be a hilarious prank if she could get a teacher to wait at a train station to get a free puppy.”
10. Made into a meme
“I had a student accidentally send me the screenshot of a Snapchat with me in it. They had made me into a jazz band meme.”
11. Need to proofread
“When I was a TA in grad school, I was grading a lab report when in the middle of a few paragraphs was “penis”. I highlighted them all and wrote a note to (a) proofread the final version and (b) never trust college kids with an unlocked computer.
I decided not to deduct any points this time.”
“I was a TA for a computer science class once and had a student who accidentally sent me a zip of photos instead of his project code. In it were photos of what seemed like a normal road trip and then suddenly a few surprise naughty pics.
Since the students were using code repositories, I just pulled his actual project to grade it and never mentioned anything to that student.”
13. Lots o’ porn
“Not exactly turning in an assignment, but I once had a kid that was working on some research for a project come to me and tell me he couldn’t find the website he was on the day before and needed to get back to it. Figured I’d just check chrome’s history and make quick work of it while looking like a computer genius (8th graders are pretty damn computer illiterate for having grown up with them in their hands 24/7).
Well. This kid had apparently logged into his google account on my classroom laptop and turned on sync to load his extensions from home. It’s a common way students manage to download certain extensions that allow them to get around the school’s webfilter. He also learned that day that it syncs your web history because as soon as a scrolled down to the “Yesterday” part of the history, I was met with a barrage of PornHub entries.”
“Pretty regularly I get stream-of-consciousness fretting in essays. “The society of ancient Rome was much like ours, except that f*ck sh*t f*ck I’m not going to finish this” etc.
Always worth a laugh.”
15. Conspiracy theory
“Late to the thread but in high school I was doing an arduino project and wiring a LED screen to the board. I had in big bold letters “BUSH DID 9/11″ flashing across the screen to get a laugh out of one of my friends and completely forgot to change it when I handed it in. My teacher gave me a pretty strange look when he came over to mark it and it wasn’t until I was taking my circuit apart that I realized what I had done.”