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Every time Harry Potter should have been expelled from Hogwarts

Seriously, he nearly murdered someone once.

Draco lying on the bathroom floor after Harry's curse
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

Harry Potter was known, of course, for breaking the rules, but usually got the benefit of the doubt because he was trying to do the right thing. But we’re here to tell you that that is wrong – that Harry Potter was, in fact, a public menace, and should have been expelled many times over during his time at Hogwarts. But, of course, you won’t read about THAT in the biased Albus Dumbledore-loving media.

So here, below, are just a few of the occasions when The Boy Who Lived should have become The Boy Who Has Been Expelled Due to Gross Breaches of the Hogwarts Code of Conduct. Although note that we have not included that time in Order of the Phoenix where Harry actually did get expelled, because that was ironically a moment where he shouldn’t have. See? We’re firm but fair here at Pottermore. The other times, however…

When he assisted in the cover-up of an illegally kept dragon

The egg Hagrid was given by a stranger sits in the fire in his hut, waiting to hatch
© JKR/Pottermore Ltd. ™ Warner Bros.

If there was any justice in the wizarding world, Harry Potter would have been expelled in his first year – when he and Hermione tried to smuggle out Hagrid’s illegally kept dragon, Norbert. Sure, it was Hagrid who should have gotten the blame and sure, they were punished; Professor McGonagall sharply removed 150 Gryffindor house points, which made the duo very unpopular. But get this: what they did was probably, definitely ILLEGAL. What kind of school is this anyway?

When Ron crashed the Ford Anglia

On this occasion, this offence was technically Ron’s doing – but you didn’t exactly see Harry rushing to stop him, did you? After Dobby the house-elf blocked Harry and Ron from crossing through to platform nine and three-quarters, the boys had no choice but to… steal Mr Weasley’s flying car and illegally use a magical object in plain view of Muggles? Wait… this was plan A? Not to wait for assistance, maybe? Or send an owl, perhaps? Nope, illegally steal a flying car and then crash it into a giant tree – that was the plan. And you’re saying that we’re supposed to be rooting for this guy?

When he attacked a teacher

The empty bedroom of the Shrieking Shack
© JKR/Pottermore Ltd. ™ Warner Bros.

Admittedly, with good reason. But that doesn’t change the fact that Harry, alongside Ron and Hermione, full-on attacked Professor Snape in Prisoner of Azkaban, during the altercation at the Shrieking Shack. Doomed, right? No one could possibly get away with that – not even the great Harry Potter! But what you’re forgetting is that this is Harry Potter’s world, and we’re just living in it. So yes, of course Snape ended up claiming that the three must have been under the Confundus Charm at the time; of course Harry ended up travelling back in time, illegally freeing a to-be-executed prisoner in the process, and returned a hero. Aw well. We’ll let this one pass. It’s not like he nearly killed a fellow student or anything.

When he literally nearly killed a fellow student

Draco Malfoy in Moaning Myrtle's bathroom
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

Yeah, yeah, we know Harry didn’t mean it, we know that he was horrified by the whole thing, but cursing someone from a random scribble in an old textbook is not only stupid – it shows a dangerous lack of judgement. The incident we’re referring to, of course, was the one between Harry and Draco Malfoy in Half-Blood Prince, where Harry unknowingly (but also kind of knowingly) cast Sectumsempra on his Hogwarts nemesis – a spell he spotted in the textbook of a former student, the Half-Blood Prince, under the label, ‘For enemies’. The curse ended up shredding Malfoy, leaving him bleeding heavily on the floor. Luckily, Professor Snape was nearby and healed Draco. Then he marched Harry to Dumbledore’s office, and Harry was expelled and – oh no, wait, Snape didn’t actually do anything; he let Harry go free after he nearly killed someone. Huh?

Not to mention getting through an entire year of Potions class through cheating

Slughorn's potions classroom
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

Speaking of the Half-Blood Prince, it might not be as serious as nearly killing someone, but are we all going to gloss over the fact that, for most of his sixth year, Harry was basically cheating his way through Potions? That by copying his answers from the textbook of another student, he should be expelled from wizarding society forever, doomed to spend the rest of his life performing magic tricks at children’s parties? Of course we are. Because he’s Harry bloody Potter.