I have an exercise in my grammar book which deals with use of 'supposed to'.

My teacher told me that 'supposed to' can not be used with was except am/is/are.

"I was supposed to meet you at 9."

Isn't above sentence grammatically correct?

I think I have heard people using 'was supposed to'. Who is grammatically correct?

  • A reputable dictionary is your best friend. No one was supposed to know about it. The meeting was supposed to take place on Tuesday, but we’ve had to postpone it.
    – JayHook
    Feb 25, 2015 at 16:53
  • I would ask the teacher for a thorough explanation. Adding such detail would make this a better question.
    – user3169
    Feb 25, 2015 at 21:18

2 Answers 2


I was supposed to meet you at 9.

Is absolutely grammatical.

I would assume the teacher indicated some specific circumstances about when to use the present or the past, and maybe for the exercise at hand, you were not supposed to(*) use the past tense. As a general rule, it makes no sense to claim the past cannot be used.

(*)see what I did there?


You and your teacher are both correct.

In the simple present tense, supposed to can only be used with "is/am/are."

But you are correct that in the simple past tense, supposed to can be used with "was," and also "were":

You/they were supposed to meet me at 9.

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