1 9 5 2 – 1 9 5 6 (USA)
Designed for pre-schoolers, Ding Dong School was one of US television’s first educational programmes for young children.
The show was hosted by Dr Frances Horwich (pictured above), a plump, grandmotherly-looking woman, who was head of the education department at Roosevelt College in Chicago, and who was affectionately known as ‘Miss Frances’ to her young fans.
NBC cancelled the show in 1956 and a syndicated Ding Dong School series resurfaced in 1959, which unfortunately failed to attract the attention of young viewers.
The well-loved Miss Frances, who never talked down to her young viewers and always spoke with a gentle, calm voice, retired from television.
The title Ding Dong School was chosen by the three-year-old daughter of the show’s producer, Reginald Werrenrath, after she watched the pilot of the show and noticed that Miss Frances rang a handheld school bell at the beginning of the show.
Dr Frances Horwich