WELLMAN — During one of the few days back to Mid-Prairie West Elementary School after what has been dubbed “winter break 2.0” by the staff, several students asked principal Bill Poock if he had to pay the children in his music video to say they were excited to be going to school in June.
On Jan. 29, as students checked the Mid-Prairie Facebook site to see if school was canceled again due to the weeklong (at the time) bout of winter weather, they were greeted by a video of the two elementary school principals at a keyboard, decked out in summer Hawaiian garb, and singing a diddie about school going well into June. The video can be viewed on Poock’s Facebook page and on the school district’s Facebook page.
“On Facebook I had seen other administrators including superintendents and principals throughout the Midwest who were using their snow days as creative outlets to announce snow days to their districts and I thought that we need to do one of those,” Poock said.
He enlisted the help of his wife Jill, as well as Robin Foster, Mid-Prairie East principal. Jill wrote the lyrics to the song to the tune of “In Summer,” from the Disney movie “Frozen.” The parody revolves around two principals singing about how they can’t wait to have students attending school in summer. The song made light of the fact the school district will be in session well into June this year. Poock takes the attitude that the winter weather ‘is what it is” and there is no point in getting mad about it, so he may as well have fun with it.
“It is just a fun way to communicate with students and parents that there is another snow day,” he said. “It was a lot of fun to do.”
Even though their tongues were firmly planted in their cheeks while singing about kids being in school all year-round, the Mid-Prairie District is currently looking into some creative ways to make up the nine missed days so students could be released for summer break as early as possible. Most school districts in the area are in a similar situation. Poock said he has not questioned the need for calling any of the school days, commenting the safety of the students is the prime concern when calling a snow day and the conditions were not safe.
Poock admitted the video that was released was the third recording. During the first two recordings he said he and Foster had started laughing in the middle.
Since the video was posted on the school district’s Facebook page, it has had over 22,000 views. There have also been plenty of requests for the next video.
While there is no immediate plan for another video of this type, Poock also said he believed the district was done with snow days — before school was canceled Thursday due to an ice storm.
“Maybe this weekend we will get a creative bug and get another one going,” he said. “Its really fun to do, to rewrite the lyrics and make a play on the lyrics.”