Snow days for the Langley school district are over for now as temperatures warm up, but during the school closures on Monday (Feb. 11) and Tuesday (Feb. 12), a Langley principal had some fun with the snow day announcement.
Kendra Simonetto, James Hill Elementary (JHE) principal released a music video parody to the theme of a 1990s hip-hop rap song Ice Ice Baby by Vanilla Ice.
Simonetto starts the rap with the made-up lyrics, “Yo, JHE, let’s kick it. Alright stop, bundle up and listen. Snow is back with an unforeseen vengeance.”
“If I can do something silly and make kids and parents laugh, it’s totally worth it to me,” Simonetto said.
The video was in response to Chris Wejr, principal of Aldergrove’s Shortreed Elementary school, who earlier released a snow day announcement by singing a slow ballad parody to Home by Michael Buble.
“Chris posted a video earlier in the day, and said ‘okay, who’s next?’ He was the principal here [at JHE] for the last four years, and created a culture of connectedness in this school,” explained Simonetto, who just started her principal role at JHE last September.
“It wasn’t really a challenge, but more of a response. This is a great thing for the kids, so it just made sense.”
After being posted to the James Hill Elementary School Facebook page on Tuesday, Simonetto’s video has exceeded 20,000 views.
Simonetto admitted she does have musical experience as she sings and has taught music her whole life.
Rapping, however, was a new challenge.
“I was like, ‘how do I step out of my comfort zone?’ So rapping is definitely out of my comfort zone,” she laughed.
Following the two snow days, Simonetto said the school’s custodial and maintenance crew have been “awesome” at ensuring snow is cleared.
“You don’t realize it’s so much work, but they did an outstanding job,” she added.
According to a Shortreed Elementary Facebook post, Michael Buble’s agent offered the school two tickets to his upcoming show in response to the video.
Other principals and superintendents around B.C. also posted ‘snow day’ songs via social media.
In response to Simonetto and Wejr’s snow day videos, the Langley School District administration team posted a ‘Welcome Back, Langley’ video on Thursday, Feb. 14 when schools re-opened. Superintendent Gord Stewart, secretary treasurer Brian Iseli, assistant superintendents Mal Gill, Woody Bradford, Barry Bunyan, and director of instruction Dawn Tomlinson joined together to create the parody of the 1970s sitcom theme song , Welcome Back, Kotter.