not up to scratch

(redirected from (not) up to scratch)

not up to scratch

Not acceptable or satisfactory; not as good as what was expected, required, or demanded. Your papers have been very good all semester, but, frankly, this one is not up to scratch. A: "How's your dinner?" B: "It's really not up to scratch with this place's usual standard."
See also: not, scratch, to, up
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

not up to scratch and not up to snuff

Fig. not adequate. Sorry, your paper isn't up to scratch. Please do it over again. The performance was not up to snuff.
See also: and, not, scratch, snuff, to, up
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

not up to scratch

COMMON If something or someone is not up to scratch, they are not good enough. If the service isn't up to scratch, the customer gets his money back. Athletes have no one to blame but themselves if their performances are not up to scratch. Parents were complaining that one of the teachers wasn't up to scratch. Note: You can say that someone or something does not come up to scratch. The Home Secretary wants better methods for dealing with police officers who do not come up to scratch. Note: You can also say that you bring someone or something up to scratch. We had to work hard on the apartment to bring it up to scratch. Note: In the past, boxers started a fight with their left feet on a line drawn on the ground, known as the scratch. When a boxer was knocked down, they were allowed thirty seconds' rest before coming `up to the scratch' once more. A boxer who was not at the line in time lost the fight.
See also: not, scratch, to, up
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012
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