Hello, I'm Melanie from Switzerland.
When I was in school we also had to do writing-punishments for beeing late, chewing gum, etc.
I don't think it was the worst way to show us where our limits are. Of course writing 500 lines in one night for chewing gum is a hard punishment. But I think she's learnt her lesson.
I know well what 500 lines (and even more) mean. Once I got 500 lines for being late. I didn't write it and next day I told our teacher that I forgot it at home. It was a big mistake! She doubled the lines up to 1.000 and asked me to bring the 500 lines I forgot at home next day. For the 1.000 lines she gave me the weekend.
It was the hell to me but I never been late or lied to my teacher. i learned my lesson very well!