Kudos To Whoever Raised These Students Who Bypassed Their Senior Prank To Shower Their Principal With Praise‏

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good teens

When we hear the term “senior prank”, it conjures images of playful, yet, unsavory doings by giddy teens on their way out of high school. My senior class did not do one, but I saw other classes that did and they were always funny, but never particularly inspiring or kind. A senior class in Wichita, KS went in a different direction and the result is so fantastic.

From Fox 8 Cleveland:

Think back to your high school’s senior prank. Maybe you and your pals slipped a pig into the building or greased all the door handles or turned all the chairs upside-down.

So it’s no surprise that Wichita high school Principal Sherman Padgett was reluctant to play along last week when a student showed up and told him to stand in the hallway holding a bucket.

“She didn’t say anything about why. She just said ‘hold the bucket,’ ” the North High School principal told CNN affiliate KWCH. “I’m not going to hold the bucket unless I have a little inkling of why it could be.”

Good thing he changed his mind.

This is where I got a bit choked up and started remembering my own high school days. I too had a principal who meant a great deal to all of us students and I wish we had thought of what these kids did for Principal Padgett:

Once he did, student after student streamed by, dropping notes of praise and thanks into the bucket.

“Thank you for making high school the best years of my life,” one said.

“You’ve made my first year experience in America one that I will always fondly remember,” read another.

One student recalled how Padgett “helped me get through my eating disorder and helped me get into therapy.”

Oh, my heart. In addition to the wonderful memories I have of my high school principal, I see the principal at my own kids’ school. Literally, every time I go. Even for after-school activities, he is always there roaming the hallways-cheerful and pleasant, ready to chat with anyone who approaches him. I know the students love him and I’m sure he finds his job rewarding, so to see it in writing from the kids you work so hard for every day would likely be overwhelming in the best possible way. Padgett tries to sum up how he felt:

“Became a little emotional on some of them,” he said, “I kind of read them and thought, ‘man, this is better than a paycheck. This is why I do the things that I do.’ “

I am so glad he got to read and keep these notes so he can be reminded that what he does everyday absolutely matters and makes a huge difference. I know it can’t always be an easy job to do and benefits like these are worth much more than a paycheck, he is totally correct. When you make the choice to teach or work in school administration, you know that you will be doing a lot more than performing job duties-you will be changing lives. These kids are so fantastic and I’m sure their parents are proud of them for recognizing and appreciating an important adult in their lives instead of taking the opportunity to perform a prank instead. It speaks highly of how they were raised that they eschewed pranking in favor of making someone who means a great deal to them feel special. Teens like this give me a lot of hope for the future.

(Image: michaeljung/Shutterstock)