keep in line
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus.
keep (one) in line
To ensure that one acts or behaves in the correct or desired manner. You've got to keep your staff in line if you want your department to hit its targets. Their eldest daughter has always been a troublemaker, and they've had a very hard time keeping her in line.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
keep (someone or an animal) in line
Fig. to make certain that someone behaves properly. It's very hard to keep Bill in line. He's sort of rowdy. The teacher had to struggle to keep the class in line.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.