not up to scratch

(redirected from aren't up to scratch)

(not) up to scratch

As good as what was expected, required, or demanded; satisfactory or adequate. "Scratch" in this phrase may refer to the starting line of a race. Primarily heard in UK, Australia. Jim, I know you've had a lot going on at home, but these reports just aren't up to scratch. How much money do you think it will take to bring my car up to scratch?
See also: scratch, up

not up to scratch

Not acceptable or satisfactory; not attaining a particular standard. Your papers have been very good all semester, but, frankly, this one is not up to scratch.
See also: not, scratch, 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, 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, up
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012
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References in periodicals archive ?
Coventry representatives of the National Association of Schoolmasters Union of Women Teachers say they aren't surprised by an Office for Standards in Education report saying half of all music lessons in schools nationally aren't up to scratch.
THE biggest chance of wild girl Amy Winehouse throwing one of her famous tantrums at Oxegen - is if her pizzas aren't up to scratch.