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Stressed Out

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“Stressed Out”
Season 1, Episode 15
Can. Airdate

February 13, 1990

Prod. Code



Yan Moore


John Bertram

Episode Guide

It Creeps!!


Bad Blood (1)

Stressed Out is the fifteenth episode of Season 1 of Degrassi High, and the fifty-seventh episode overall of the original Degrassi series. It aired on February 13, 1990.


Caitlin is devastated when Ms. Avery is reassigned to be a roving teacher and decides she'd rather quit teaching altogether. Michelle, determined to prove to her father that she can cope on her own, working and going to school, starts taking caffeine pills to extend her study time. Snake is suffering from a mysterious ailment that won't seem to go away.


Before taking her final exam, Caitlin has to return a few books to the resource center to Ms. Avery. Caitlin enters to find Ms. Avery, who is looking upset, and says that she is there to return her books, Ms. Avery just tells her to put them down there. After returning the books, Caitlin doesn't leave yet, she notices how upset Ms. Avery looks and asks her if anythings wrong, when she says that nothing is, and Caitlin just keeps looking at her, she snaps at Caitlin, asking what she's looking at, and telling her to leave. When Caitlin leaves, Ms. Avery angrily crumples up the paper she was reading. After taking the exam, Caitlin, Maya, and Diana are all seen leaving the classroom, Maya and Diana are elated to be done, but Caitlin is still concerned about Ms. Avery. Maya reassures Caitlin that Ms. Avery is just stressed like everyone else around exam time, then the three of them go to clean out their lockers.

Michelle is at the water fountain in school with a box with pills in it, she takes a pill and drinks some water, but as she's putting the box away B.L.T. walks by and notices the box. B.L.T. wants to know what she just put in her bag, but she doesn't want to tell him, and snaps at him when he pushes her to tell him. Michelle apologizes after, saying that she gets snappy like that during exams, and shows him the caffeine pills she's been using. B.L.T. insists that she shouldn't be taking the pills, because they're "drugs", but Michelle brushes them off, she thinks they're no big deal given you don't even need a prescription.

Snake is stressing out about his science exam, and Wheels and Joey are about to go to study for their next exam. Wheels wants to go play video games with them before studying, so they can just relax first, Joey says he'll go, but Snake can't because he's going driving with his father, and his driving exam is coming up as well. Snake is confident about passing the exam, he thinks he has everything covered, but Wheels and Joey taunt him because he didn't pass the "stupid" test before.

Caitlin, Maya, and Diana are cleaning out their lockers when Caitlin comes across a few books she forgot to return, so she leaves to return them. Caitlin sets her books down and is turning to leave when Ms. Avery calls her, stopping her, and apologizes for snapping at her earlier. Ms. Avery explains that she was upset because she won't be back next year, and Caitlin asks her why she won't be back, she tells Caitlin to ask the school board, not her. Caitlin asks Ms. Avery if they fired her, but Ms. Avery doesn't give a direct response, and just says that she's had it up to "here" with a board that doesn't care and kids that don't listen, so Caitlin assumes that the board did fire her. Caitlin then plans with Maya and Diana to make a letter of protest against the board firing Ms. Avery, Maya and Diana are hesitant, but Caitlin insists, saying she'll type it out that night and get signatures the next day. However, 

Snake is convincing himself he's sick and shouldn't be there, Joey tells him that he feels a little warm, but nothing worth worrying over, Snake thinks it's a bad sign, saying he's only there because he mother made him come. Wheels reassures him that once he walks into the classroom to take the exam, he'll be feeling fine, but Snake isn't convinced. 

Michelle is still doing whatever it takes to study and do well on exams. B.L.T. is worried for her, and wants her to take a break, but she still has three exams to go and passing isn't enough for her, her father thinks living somewhere else is hurting her future, and her grades are slipping.

Caitlin is going around getting people to sign her letter of protest, when Raditch approaches her, asking about the petition, he tells her that Ms. Avery wasn't fired, the job in the resource center was for one year, and she knew that, and she declined the other job they offered her.

B.L.T. is trying to help Michelle study in the resource center when she freaks out, nothing is going right for her, and she doesn't have enough time to study. When B.L.T. tells her to relax, she then starts throwing her books at him in anger, telling him to stop it, moments later she goes quiet and faints. Michelle gets help from the nurse, and learns that she really shouldn't be taking the pills.

Ms. Avery is called to the office, and when she leaves, some kids that helped plan a surprise going away party for her enter, so they can set up the resource center for the party before she returns. When Ms. Avery returns, the surprise party is set up, and when she realizes what it was, she was elated. Caitlin goes to the party and apologizes for being rude to Ms. Avery the other day, who forgives her. Ms. Avery also thanks Caitlin for inspiring her to apply for another teaching position up north. Upon hearing this, Caitlin feels like she finally did something right.

  • This episode marks the last appearance of Ms. Avery.
  • The character featured in the final freeze frame for this episode was Caitlin.

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