On a Friday afternoon, Austin LeMay, campus cultural director at Tenaya Middle School in Fresno, joined a group of teenagers dancing in the campus courtyard, as they danced to the song “You’re a Jerk” fashionable at the time on social networks. .
It was not unusual for him. LeMay throws her awesome dance moves every Friday with the kids. But this time it caught the attention of TikTok.
Fellow teacher Jenny McCauley, who posted the video of LeMay dancing online late that Saturday night, describes her meteoric rise.
“Sunday morning I woke up and it was over a million views by then. And it wasn’t even 9am. I found out that Snoop Dogg had shared it on his Instagram story on Sunday afternoon, to the point where I knew it was going to go deeper than I could even imagine,” she recalled.
Friday dance parties are just one of many measures the school has taken to try to make school more fun for students and help them reconnect with each other and faculty after social isolation. prolonged by the pandemic.
As for LeMay, he certainly doesn’t take his newfound fame for granted.
“All the comments were like – ‘He’s been waiting for this for 12 years’. I’ve been waiting for this for 30 years, man!” he said.
But at the end of the day, he says, it’s about inspiring students and making them love school, and that’s what interests him.
“It’s my job and it’s my career, but more than anything, it’s my passion. Children are our passion,” he says.