Video: Chicago Teachers Surprise Students with "Thriller" Flash Mob

The South Side charter school's staff turns to Michael Jackson to boost student "zest."


Teachers at Chicago's 3-year-old Gary Comer College Prep sure know how to surprise (and motivate) their students. This afternoon at their Third Quarter Town Hall, the South Side charter school's staff staged an awesome flash mob performance to Michael Jackson's "Thriller"—and it was all caught on video by a student.

Principal James Troupis says his team didn't come up with the idea—they borrowed the Thriller teacher flash mob idea from suburban Palatine High School, which did one last December. But doing things like this are a regular part of Comer's college prep culture. "The teachers just decided to do it for fun," said Troupis, adding that they are constantly thinking about ways "to increase student zest."

Indeed, Comer's website says they "believe anything is possible with enough grit, zest and optimism." They may be on to something. Troupis says their internal pre-ACT score projections show they could end up as " the highest performing non-selective high school on Chicago's South Side."