Instead of banning senior pranks, Notre Dame-Bishop Gibbons Assistant Principal Pat Moran gave the seniors strict rules: no destruction of property, and nothing that could harm people.
Then he let them go at it.
It was a moment of trust, and boy, did they come through.
Late Thursday night, they filled the front foyer with red plastic cups, each with a splash of water inside to keep them from toppling over.
“We could tell they got tired because as we went, there was less and less water in them,” Moran said.
Then the seniors moved the teachers’ lounge into the hallway, creating a living room scene with couches and easy chairs.
A skeleton wearing a lab coat was arranged in the principal’s chair.
But not a single thing was damaged. The seniors left the school changed, but unharmed.
“It was pretty nice,” Moran said. “I gave them two parameters they could not cross. Plus, we really just have good kids.”
Teachers assembled to pick up the cups as school began. But then, Moran got his second surprise of the day: Other students, juniors down to sixth-graders, flooded into the foyer to help.
“That was the best part of the day,” he said. “We didn’t ask. The other kids came down and volunteered.”
They had to do a little negotiating to clean up the hallway living room. Some teachers had decided to enjoy it while it lasted.
“Some teachers kind of liked it,” Moran said.
They stretched out on the couches, relaxing in the hallway.
Last year’s prank was also memorable for being playful, but not damaging. Seniors moved the school’s knights to the roof.
The statues could be seen from the road as visitors drove in. Moran loved it.