GREENSBURG, KY (WAVE) - It's the call that parents have gotten too many times this winter: school is closed because of snow and ice. The long, drawn-out season has drawn groans from some, but it's bringing out the humor in others like the superintendent of schools in Green County, Kentucky.
For 12 days this winter, Green County students sat at home, instead of in the classroom. Jim Frank has had to make that call each time.
"It's been pretty frustrating," Frank said. "When you get snow on the roads, it takes a long time to get off those shady areas on those hillsides."
But this isn't another story about the winter that just won't end. It's about how Frank is using his sense of humor to make it all just a little more bearable.
"I happened to see a principal do it from another school district and I thought, well we can do that," said Frank.
So with each day that students get a classroom break, Frank and his family get to work, making a video based on a popular song to tell students that school is closed.
"My wife, she pretty much writes the lyrics, you know, changes them up," Frank said. "Now Grace, she was, she took a little convincing," he added of his 14 year old daughter.
"I thought, you know, that it would be really embarrassing," Grace said of her original hesitancy.
They made Blue Christmas into Blue Monday. Katy Perry's Roar changed to, "we're going to hear you snore." Frank himself replaced the fox. "What does Jim Frank say? No, no, no, no, no, no school."
The videos spread faster than the original of that viral song.
"We don't really have like a local news or anything so a lot of what we hear about is from Facebook or social media, It spreads like wildfire in a small town," said Brianna Scott, a Green County High School senior.
So with each post the Frank family becomes the talk of the town and then some.
"His Facebook videos had like hundreds of shares," said Emily Green, a GCHS senior
In some cases, that number climbed into the thousands. Grace has even attained celebrity status with customers at her job at a local pizza spot.
"She said, 'You know that girl that was in that Elvis movie, that's her right there,'" Grace said of a lady who came in with her daughter. "That little girl, her eyes lit up."
"We've heard from Texas and Tennessee and Alabama and actually even heard from Australia and Africa," said Frank.
In that, the life-long educator has found a lesson.
"If you're going to put something out there, make sure it's what you want it to be because you never know what it's going to do," he said.
Like most of us, Jim Frank will be glad when he's not making viral videos because of snow. That doesn't mean though, that his musical career is over. He says he might go into the classrooms with that creative spirit he's showing in his videos and maybe make a video with the students for SAT testing.
He's not the only one thinking that way. Students in Borden, Indiana just made a song to the tune of Lorde's Royals to motivate fellow classmates during their statewide testing.
Tuesday, April 20 2010 11:21 PM EDT2010-04-21 03:21:00 GMT
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