Students and teachers reflect their opinions on whether bells should be used at Urban


An old school bell sits in the courtyard of a school photo by Michael Coghlan

Hannah Berk, Staff Writer

The idea of having bells at Urban has been tossed around for years. Some students and faculty members want bells, while most think that they will be disrupting.

In a survey filled out 71 percent of Urban Students and faculty said that they are happy with Urban’s current none existent bell system. “To me, a remarkable expression of Urban school culture is that no one needs to be loudly and mechanically told when and where to go,” said Jonathan Howland, English teacher, said in an email.

Clara Webby (’15) seems to agree: “I think a class should end when the entire lesson or point is finished.” She also wrote that “(a) bell should not be the reason a class is ended, but only if questions are completely answered and that class’ agenda is finished.”

Although the majority of students agree with Webby and Howland, there are still some strong advocators for bells. “The schedule is really complicated,” an anonymous Urban student wrote in a survey, “having a sound cue to signal the end of class would be very helpful.” Other survey responses highlight that not having bells allows teachers to keep student late. “I want to leave when class ends,” wrote the same anonymous student. Having bells would push teachers to end class on time.

While some students will always want bells at Urban, it seems that Urban’s population has spoken and that they think that students are capable enough to rely on simply a clock. There is no question that some Urbanites want bells, but Urban prepares students for the outside world. As one anonymous respondent said, “there are no bells in life.”