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Senior prank at Delaware boarding school goes viral

Senior prank at Delaware boarding school goes viral
Senior prank at Delaware boarding school goes viral 02:19

MIDDLETOWN, Del. (CBS) – 'Tis the season for senior pranks. One this year out of Delaware is racking up the views on social media.

"Seventy-seven (students) in the living room, the library, the dining room, the back porch, the kitchen – they were everywhere," Joy McGrath said with a chuckle.

The Head of School for St. Andrew's in Middletown, Delaware is talking about the Class of 2023's senior prank earlier this month.

"We made it very clear that we all had to be very quiet in their house and had to go straight to bed so as to not wake her up to get that money shot," KaiChun Chuang said. The recent graduate filmed the now viral video showing McGrath opening the door to her kitchen to a room full of students.

Courtesy: Sophia Munoz

The senior class at the boarding school snuck into McGrath's house around 1 a.m. They brought pillows, couch cushions, and blankets, and slept until McGrath came down into the kitchen at 6 a.m.

Courtesy: Matt Carroll

These seniors had a little help getting in. McGrath said she learned afterward, her husband, Ty, and other faculty helped. They also had coffee and donuts after the surprise prank.

It is not uncommon to see McGrath's kitchen and living room filled with students. St. Andrew's faculty lives on campus, some even in the dorms.

Courtesy: Ty Jones

"When I saw other people surprised by the prank that's when I was like maybe this was a better prank than we even thought," Co-president of the Class of 2023, Trinity Smith, said.

McGrath added: "There's this moment of community and connection between a group of people that are here in pursuit of an education together, we're all working to be the best people we can, be the best citizens we can, be the best family members we can be, and the best community that we can have."

The video posted to St. Andrew's Instagram account has now gone viral with nearly 2 million likes and more than 9,000 comments after being posted 12 days ago. McGrath wrote this letter to parents about it all.

"This class really made it their mission this year as seniors to bring the school's culture back. And our culture is a culture that's totally based in connection," McGrath said.

The seniors CBS News Philadelphia spoke with agree – they never thought the prank would take off on social media. In fact, they were only videotaping it to show another faculty member McGrath's reaction.

"It's a little bit ironic because we have a no phone policy," Ford Chapman said. The Class of 2023 co-class president continued, "It's just a little bit funny our big thing is a viral video."

Viral or not – McGrath and the seniors agree these 60 seconds show just how truly close the community is at St. Andrew's and the long-lasting bonds between a teacher and her students.

"I would be happy to see any one of those kids, anywhere in the world, any time, just as happy as I was to see them that morning," McGrath said. She continued, "Before I became Head of School, I actually lived on a boys dorm with 10th-grade boys, and so I could sleep through the apocalypse. And apparently, I did!"

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