On Monday, March 30, the assistant principals of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School posted a YouTube video titled “COVID-19 Can’t Touch This” in efforts to encourage students to practice good hygiene. The video is a contrafactum of MC Hammer’s “U Can’t Touch This,” with lyrics Principal Michelle Kefford wrote herself.
Included in the video alongside Principal Kefford are Assistant Principals Jay Milmed, Sandi Davis, Ivette Figueroa, Daniel Most, Daniel Lechtman and Tariq Qaiyim. While Kefford sang her rendition of the song, the assistant principals danced around her with cleaning supplies to stress the importance of sanitization during the coronavirus.
“I felt that the video was a fun and creative idea of the administration to help spread the important message about what to do during this outbreak,” senior Alyssa Tephord said. “It is a very important message, but the video showed it can be communicated through an entertaining format.”
The video was filmed in two shots and was later posted by behavior and mathematics specialist Anna Koltunova.
On Tuesday, April 1, another YouTube video was released, displaying MSD staff holding up signs of encouragement for students.
“I put a communication out to all of the staff, not just the teachers. It was all of our staff: non-instructional, clerical members, security, counselors, people from the wellness center, social workers, so it wasn’t just teachers. It was sent out to the entire staff and asked if they wanted to participate,” Kefford said. “I requested that they send in a photo with a message, I made mine first and sent that as an example of what we were requesting so they could see and then they emailed me photos.”
The pictures sent in by teachers and staff were then forwarded to Davis, who compiled them into a video collage. Davis used the theme song from the show “Friends” called, “I’ll be there for You,” by The Rembrandts to pair with the video. This video was then posted by Koltunova on her YouTube account.
“It was a great way as a staff to send a unified message to the kids that we are all in this together and we miss them,” world history teacher Michael Nastasi said. “I take no enjoyment in this distance learning that must be done for health and safety purposes.”
Both videos were shared through MSD’s website as well as sent through Remind messages by teachers.
“The main thing for me, and I think for all of our administrators, is just to make sure that the kids know even though that they’re not in our direct sight or in our school everyday, that we’re still there with them and we’re here if they need anything, just an email away, and we’re still very much a part of their everyday life and we’ll get through all of this,” Kefford said.
MSD is closed indefinitely as of Friday, April 3 at 2 pm. Teachers were allowed to come into school the previous week to collect any materials or supplies from their classrooms.