We can’t be the only ones who have dreamed about attending a school like Pacific Coast Academy back in the day. Between a bright, lively campus right by the beach and dorm rooms that are basically mini palaces, PCA became the high school experience we all hoped for. Except, high school in real life fell just a little short on our expectations of endless free time and Blix machines around every corner. And by “a little short” we mean very, very short.
Since we’re still a little salty, we’ve re-visited Zoey 101 and rounded up the most ridiculous things we’ve seen on the show that we know for a fact never happened at our schools — or any other ones, for that matter.
15. No real-life students have that much free time on their hands.
It seemed as though no one on Zoey 101 actually went to class, save for a few times when the classroom was actually a foundational scene for the episode. Even then, the students never actually did any work. When Zoey and her friends weren’t running around trying to play matchmaker or solving problems that most normal high schoolers didn’t have, they were in the lounge playing billiards, killing time with strange activities and sipping Blix (seriously, what even was Blix and why did everyone seem to be so addicted to it?!?!). IRL, schedules were tight and schoolwork was hard!
14. There were no wacko dorm advisers IRL.
And if you lived on campus while in college, you know that the dorm rooms were about a quarter of the size of the ones on the show. Seriously, these 15-year-olds were living their best lives. With a mini fridge, comfy-looking beds that were actually spacious, decor that’s pretty much banned on most campuses and room to actually move around, those rooms were fit for high school royalty — or any royalty for that matter. Honestly, if we got to live out of the teenage bedroom of our dreams, we would probably never leave.
13. There was no such thing as “coffee carts.”
What even is a coffee cart? Maybe there was a cute little coffee shop a few blocks away from school, but there were no coffee spots on wheels to feed our caffeine addiction quickly on the pathway to class. Can you imagine having Starbucks coffee carts in the middle of the hallways? Those lines would be loooooong (not that they ever were on Zoey 101)! At least we all saved a ton of money without a coffee cart at school.
12. Students aren’t allowed on rooftops — not even for tanning.
And for good reason, too. Serious accidents can occur if students were allowed to socialize on the roof of their high school building. In one episode, the girls made a huge deal out of not being able to tan on the roof of the boys’ dorm, but honestly, their school is literally two minutes away from the beach — they could’ve just gone there to work on their goddess glow. It’s not like they attend classes, anyway… It seems like the show was just full of excuses for teenagers to not get an education.
11. There’s no “prank week” unless you want a suspension.
In high school, we had one day for pranks and it was only for the seniors to enjoy. Even then, everyone was careful not to do anything too wild or disrespectful that could get them punished. And, it was literally just one school day of one or two pranks — never an entire week’s worth. In one episode, Zoey and some other girls decided to prank the boys by dressing the statue of the PCA founder in a bra. The school was ready to punish Zoey for it since it was totally rude, but in the end, her friends basically saved her with a plan that would never have worked in real life.
10. You couldn’t just pick yourself up and transfer to another school across the pond.
In case you don’t recall the whole Chase-loves-Zoey ordeal, Zoey was pissed that Chase allegedly didn’t care that her parents might move her to England, so that really prompted her to leave without saying goodbye. But when the news (sorry, “news”) slipped that Zoey was in love with Chase, he promptly transfers to a school in England to try to be her boyfriend, The only problem is that she returns back to PCA to see him at the exact same time! Classic. Even though Chase insisted that he had to beg his parents to let him transfer, it didn’t feel that way on the show. And, it just doesn’t work that way in real life. Sorry.
9. Sushi restaurants were around town, not on campus.
Aside from the coffee cart thing, we don’t recall ever having a fancy sushi bar right outside our high school doors. You probably had something similar on a college campus, though, but never in high school. And the icing on the spicy tuna roll: students could even have the sushi delivered to their dorm rooms! Sushi Rox was probably yet another reason that students hung out more than they studied for exams.
8. Disc golf was absolutely not a thing our gym teachers fell for.
In real life, if you played on a varsity sports team, you might have been excused from gym class at some schools. But something tells us that a disc golf team wasn’t considered an eligible for the excuse. On the show, Zoey and her friends literally just put together a team where you can do minimal work and get out of running laps on the track, just because they were lazy and didn’t want to sweat a little. Sure you might’ve dreaded running miles for gym class unless you were on the track team, but starting your own sports team was probably more work than actually running.
7. The teachers weren’t such push-overs.
Not all of your problems can be solved with a sweet smile and a few bats of your eyelashes, but it’s a trick that Zoey and her friends have used quite a few times to get teachers (and even Dean Rivers) to see things their way. If you’ve ever wanted to try this out IRL, spoiler alert: don’t. Successfully negotiating with difficult teachers was done by being polite and showing that you were willing to go the extra mile to reach your goals.
6. Students ate lunch in a cafeteria, not an outdoor patio with a view.
Talk about a meal with a view! Some high school cafeterias didn’t even have windows and were located in the basement of the school. This one is literally outside where you can feel the warm Cali breeze blow through your hair. If you were a senior, maybe you were allowed to go off campus for lunch where you could scout out a place that did have an outdoor patio for lunch. But that was about as Zoey 101 as it got.
5. Usually, the high school lounge was just a tiny room that could fit no more than 20 people at a time.
Someone please tell us how their dorm lounge was bigger than a living room. It was complete with couches, a flat screen TV, desks for studying, a Blix machine (again with the Blix!!!) a pool table, and a foosball table. Forget the dorm rooms, you could basically live in this lounge. Think back to what your high school senior lounge looked like and it probably couldn’t compare to all this.
4. There were no 15-year-olds riding around on Jet-X’s.
The Jet-X was the hottest scooter any tween could ask for. In fact, it was probably way cooler than getting an actual car. Most high school students were lucky if they got their first car while in high school. Most people just took public transportation to school or got their parents to drive them. Lots of the PCA students — Zoey and her friends included — rode Jet-X’s around campus like they were bicycles or skateboards. It was actually a normal thing for them!
3. High school absolutely was not on the beach.
Perhaps the biggest shocker of them all. Some real-life high schools were located in quaint neighborhoods, and there was maybe a park or deli nearby where students could hang out afterward. At PCA, students were just a quick walk away from sandy shores and blue water as far as the eye could see. Even if they didn’t actually go to the beach, at least they could enjoy the view from their dorm rooms.
2. A 5-pound Jar of gummy worms was the last thing the school store would have.
Are we the only ones who were super jealous when Dustin went to the school bookstore and happily purchased a jar of gummy worms bigger than he was? Normal high school bookstores had backpacks and school swag and — you know — actual books. At most we could probably just get a small packet of sugary treats. One of those jars could easily feed our entire senior class.