SpongeBob is brushing Gary when he hears a strange noise. He goes outside to investigate, only to find out that it's Squidward breathing. Squidward then tells SpongeBob that he will pay him five dollars if he gives him peace and quiet for the rest of the day. However, Squidward already gave SpongeBob five dollars to leave him alone yesterday. He gets annoyed, so Squidward begins walking away. He then finds out that SpongeBob is following him, so he starts running and he jumps into his boat. However, he can't find the key and SpongeBob arrives at Squidward's boat. Squidward then becomes furious, only to find out that SpongeBob wanted to give him his keys. Squidward then drives away and literally drives through a stop sign. He then gets pulled over by a police man, telling him that he needs to go to boating school.
Then the scene changes to Squidward walking up to Mrs. Puff's Boating School and when he opens the door, he sees SpongeBob and then starts to cry. During class, Squidward is forced to sit next to SpongeBob. Then Mrs. Puff asks Squidward why he is enrolled in Boating School, so he tells everyone in the class while SpongeBob heavily breathes during this. Then Mrs. Puff tells SpongeBob to illustrate his side of the story, but SpongeBob just draws a picture with him and Squidward saying "SpongeBob And Squidward, Best Boating Buddies Forever" on the chalkboard.
Later, it is lunchtime and Squidward tries to avoid SpongeBob. He then decides to eat in the bathroom, where he gets beat up. Then he arrives back in class with SpongeBob and Mrs. Puff tells him that he has to drive with SpongeBob for a test. So they get inside a boat and SpongeBob is the driver. However, he drives out of control and ends up in a research lab. There, he, Squidward, and Mrs. Puff shrink and get washed down the drain. SpongeBob and Mrs. Puff end up in a water fountain back at Mrs. Puff's Boating School, while Squidward ends up in the bathroom and gets beat up again.
Then the scene changes to everyone back in class. Mrs. Puff explains that everyone is going to do a test. But when SpongeBob tries to help him, Squidward snaps at him that they aren't "Boating Buddies" and he never wants help from him ever again. SpongeBob's feelings are hurt. However, Squidward can't do the test because he can't pick up the pencil, so he asks for SpongeBob's help; when the young sponge reminds him of what he said, Squidward denies it, only for his voice to be recorded by another student. Finally, when Squidward admits that he and SpongeBob are "Boating Buddies," SpongeBob cheers. But time runs out and Squidward asks Mrs. Puff what to do. She then says that he needs to come back the next week. Then Squidward finds out that SpongeBob also failed the test and he has to come back the next week too, and Squidward screams and the episode ends.
When SpongeBob was driving recklessly and nearly hit the old lady, it was the granny/old lady from the episode "Have You Seen This Snail?"
This episode was supposed to air on August 8, but was aired a day early on the 7th.
Mrs. Puff says they all know why SpongeBob is in Boating School, but it is unknown how he went to Boating School in the first place. It is assumed that he just wanted to have the freedom to drive a boat and be on the road. There is much small evidence supporting this.
Running Gag: Squidward being injured by a bully in the restroom.
When Squidward walked away from SpongeBob, Squidward had a newspaper in his hand, but in the next shot, he doesn't. Also, Squidward doesn't like newspaper as shown in "Can You Spare a Dime?," so there might a reason why he held the newspaper.
At the end of the episode, SpongeBob says he has never passed the test exam. In "Boating School," he says he always passes the oral but can never do the driving part.
The gorilla costume that SpongeBob wears when he drives through the Costume Supplies is similar to the one Patrick wore in I Had an Accident.
When SpongeBob drives through the costume shop, Mrs. Puff is dressed like Jason Voorhees, the main antagonist of "Friday the 13th."
When Squidward's hot chocolate landed on his head, SpongeBob said "Chocolate Rain!" (After coffee rain), this is a reference to the song Chocolate Rain by Tay Zonday.
When Squidward sits down to take the final exam, he is neither holding a pencil nor is there a pencil on his desk, but in the next shot, he has a pencil laying on his desk.
In the scene where Squidward is talking to SpongeBob about him needing his help, Debbie Rechid was totally pink and in the next scene, she was purple.
When Squidward says "I don't care what Mr. Krabs says!," when SpongeBob leans backwards slightly, SpongeBob's belt turns white. This is likely an animation error and is often pointed out by fans.
When Squidward is hurt by the big guy those two times, he walks in on the right, but the door to enter and exit is on the left.
After Squidward is done with his illustration, he doesn't erase the board when he is finished, and when SpongeBob is drawing, there is no trace of Squidward's drawing left, and was never seen picking up an eraser.
In this episode, SpongeBob's cheeks appear bigger (or his mouth was smaller) than usual.
When SpongeBob draws the curl on the line, it disappears when the camera zooms out to the entire chalkboard.
After Squidward draws SpongeBob on the chalkboard, he appears to draw a line. That line was never seen.