Watch creative principals sing, rap school closing announcements

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As the snowflakes pile up from Kentucky and North Carolina up into New England, children everywhere are wishing and hoping for that magical announcement: School is canceled for the day.

Can that announcement ever get old? For James Detwiler, an elementary school principal in Burlington, Ky., it did: “I was getting bored with saying the same thing over and over again.”

Detwiler, principal at Stephens Elementary, told the Los Angeles Times that his Kentucky school district was on its 10th or 11th snow day. So he took as his inspiration a Broadway musical -- and then ‘80s rock.


Detwiler decided to sing his next announcement to the tune of “Tomorrow” from the musical “Annie.” He said his daughter, whose screams of joy were heard in the background of one of his announcements, inspired him to make the change.

After he broke out with “Annie,” Detwiler fielded a request from the school drama teacher to try “Bohemian Rhapsody” by Queen.

“Queen? I can’t even sing along to that album,” Detwiler replied. But sing he did, along with drama teacher Chad Caddell, and to the delight of many. They posted a video of their performance on YouTube, where it is closing in fast on 2 million views.

The video message also served a larger purpose, according to Detwiler, who said he was really using it to beef up the school’s use of technology and to teach students about using social media in a responsible way.

“I really did not understand the power of social media,” Detwiler added.

Check out Detwiler’s video above, and a few more principal-made videos below.

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stacey.leasca@latimes.comTwitter: @Sleasca