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Saved by the Bell

Updated: Sep 8, 2019

by ALEX PIROWSKI and ERIN CLARK - The bell that signals the start and end of class gets an upgrade.

WESTFIELD, Ind. (Aug. 2019) - The 2019 school year has brought about many different changes: later start times, CORE and construction. One of the most controversial of these changes happens to be the bell’s new sound.

“I don’t know whether to take it seriously or not,” Jack Krueckeburg (11) said. “I liked the old bell. I had no issues, but I don’t know why they changed it. Every time I hear this new bell I feel like I’m about to fasten my seatbelt on a plane.”

Krueckeburg isn’t the only student who noticed a resemblance between the new bell and an airplane intercom.

“If you pull up the airplane ‘ding’ and the school bell, they are the exact same pitch and frequency,” Myah Sandlin (12) said. “It’s like ‘Sky High.’ Westfeld could be going into the clouds during classes.”

The new bell also brought some unintended consequences due to its varying volumes.

“I’m in the guitar class, and it’s upstairs in the auditorium,” Noelle Naughton (12) said.

“Sometimes we can’t hear the new bell, so we have to guess when we get released. But then in other classrooms I can hear it completely fine.”

However, seniors were by no means startled by administration throwing change their way.

“If you look at the class of 2020, we have not had the same school year all of high school” Sandlin said. “Change is normal, so I’m cool with the bell’s new sound, but I did see someone in the hallway cry when the new bell happened. Well, I like to pretend it was over the bell.”

This change was both sudden and unexpected for students. So, of course, they began to speculate as to why the old bell had been discarded.

“I think because they’re trying to change so much about the school they were kinda like ‘why not, let’s just change everything, change the bell’ for kicks and giggles,” Naughton said.

The similarities between the new bell and a plane’s intercom sparked other theories among students.

“The admin must have traveled on an airplane this summer and gotten inspired,” Krueckeberg said.

Even the teachers were not immune to theorizing about what had happened.

“At first I was a little surprised with the new sound, but I think we needed to update our system,” math teacher Mrs. Emily Holt said. “The bells are a little different, when they speak over the PA it’s a little different. From what I heard, the construction workers went into some of the wiring and other notification buttons and things, and they cut some wires. But they had to upgrade everything by ripping out the old.”

Teachers appeared to be more in-the-know than students. Based on technology coordinator Mr. Dani Ward’s explanation, Mrs. Holt was not too far off.

“The construction had some new bell/intercom systems in the rooms that were being worked on over the summer,” Mr. Ward said. “The new stuff wouldn’t play nice with the old stuff, so they had to up their time table to switch it over to the new system ASAP instead of at a future date.”

Though the new bell may be a work in progress, Mr. Ward hopes that the update will provide more benefits to the overall intercom system.

“I’m the one who programs bell schedules,” Mr. Ward said. “It’s a lot easier to program them now, so that’s nice, and theoretically we have more options now when it comes to utilizing the intercom system and various things. It’s definitely more up-to-date than the old system, so hopefully it’s a good change.”

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