Partners in Education

Partners in Education

North Hall Middle School and Jacobs Media

After discussion and encouragement from North Hall Middle School (NHMS) Principal, Dr. Brad Brown, Jeff Gerrell, Ed.S., a technology teacher, began research on implementing a radio station at the middle school. Gerrell’s first step was to find a FCC approved, legal FM transmitter, and that piece of equipment was purchased in spring 2008. In September 2008, NHMS launched its on-campus FM radio station.

Using resources already available in the school’s Technology classroom, a campus radio station was the next step in getting the word out to the community and campus about events happening at the school. This school year has been a pilot/learning experience with improvement slated for the next academic year. The station operates on the clear frequency of 97.9 FM and is called “97.9 FM, The Voice of North Hall Middle School.” When visitors (in particular, parents dropping off and picking up students) arrive on the school campus, they can tune in on their radio in stereo. The automated format runs 24/7 using a play list selected locally when school is in operation. The music format is “Middle of the Road,” from country, top 40, alternative to classical. Students pre-record announcements, station IDs and informational tidbits, and they are rotated on a computer program.

The idea for a radio station arose from Gerrell’s love of radio since becoming a local DJ when he was 16. “I am a member of the Greater Hall Chamber’s Partners in Education Committee,” said Gerrell. “This organization seemed perfect for assistance in placing a radio station at North Hall Middle School, and Jacobs Media was a natural selection for our partner. Through their assistance, the station has a more of a professional sound.”

Through the partnership, the school has access to Jacob Media’s “” newscasts to play during morning announcements, at lunch time in the cafeteria, on the school sound system, and during student pick up. Jacobs Media can use the school’s transmitter/radio station to co-broadcast any game played at the North Hall High Stadium. For example, if there is a game between Gainesville and North Hall at the Brickyard, and due to other obligations, Jacob’s Media is broadcasting it on 1240AM-The Ticket, the school can stream the game (their play by play) via their computer website and rebroadcast it on a clearer FM frequency in the stadium.

“Jacobs Media is fortunate to be in the position to assist area schools interested in broadcasting and electronic media. We look forward to hearing from schools and parents about North Hall Middle School’s progress,” said Jay Andrews, Vice President, Jacobs Media Corporation.

The future looks promising for both North Hall Middle School and Jacobs Media as they discover how both entities can succeed with this partnership.

For information on Partners in Education, call Dana Miller, VP Education, Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce, 770-532-6206. Email: