Prioritizing student safety, teacher safety, and facility safety is a must for schools looking to instill a safe learning environment. Given the prevalence of school-based violence today, school officials shouldn’t wait for an incident to occur before prioritizing school security and surveillance.
To better prepare themselves for any future situation, school safety and security teams turn to surveillance in schools as a way of reducing campus crime and enhancing visibility into day-to-day activities and operations.
How are Security Camera Systems used on School Campuses?
Deter Crime on Campus: Surveillance in schools can also safeguard schools from more common, day-to-day incidents. Specifically, school surveillance cameras discourage instances of school-based vandalism, larceny, and assault, as well as many additional types of suspicious or nefarious behavior, by regulating and standardizing school visitor management around the clock.
Enforce Positive Student & Teacher Behaviors: To reinforce positive student and teacher conduct, many officials depend on school surveillance cameras. By monitoring footage from security cameras in classrooms and hallways, school security personnel can ensure that proper school conduct is being observed.
Incident Resolution: Most inter-student conflicts include two opposing accounts of an incident. School surveillance cameras give school administrators the ability to consult definitive video evidence of an event. Having security cameras in schools can also offer objective video evidence of incidents involving harm or theft in classrooms, hallways, and other high-traffic areas. This footage is used to identify suspects, and serves as compelling evidence during the disciplinary phase of investigations.
Remotely Monitor Large Open Spaces: For school or campus safety teams at safe educational institutions, increasing situational awareness is an ongoing goal. These schools aim to provide reliable surveillance for large facilities to ensure school gym, auditorium, parking lot, and playground safety. Ultimately, these schools maintain a level of situational awareness that schools and colleges without surveillance simply can’t reach.
Remotely Monitor Entrances, Exits, and Other Blind Spots: Monitoring blind spots such as entrances and exits can mitigate any school safety risks. In fact, the best school safety teams implement 24/7 recording in high-traffic or high-risk areas such as these. By recording all activity during and after business hours, officials are substantially more likely to catch intruders and unauthorized activities.
Give Parents Peace of Mind: Actively monitoring footage from school cameras can reinforce the confidence and trust that parents have in their child’s school, and can give them peace of mind during the day. As a result, proactively monitoring—and even rewarding—positive student and teacher behavior can be an integral part of school safety procedures today.
Must-Have Features for Campus Video Security
Ability to Quickly Find & Share Footage: To ensure student safety, being able to quickly access and share footage of time-sensitive events is critical. When emergencies arise, truly safe schools won’t be tied up searching for footage, and law enforcement won’t be held up by it. With centralized footage, the ability to quickly find incidents of interest, and the ability to quickly share this footage with authorities, will give these schools the best chance at quick, safe, and calm emergency resolution.
Easy Non-Technical User Experience: Installing school surveillance cameras that require technical fluency substantially limits the role principals, superintendents, and front office personnel can take in surveillance. This places responsibility of footage access and retrieval on school safety and surveillance IT personnel, rather than on the stakeholders who require the footage. This leads to slower incident resolution, overcommitted school IT departments, and—as a result—less-than-ideal safety on campus.
Low-Bandwidth School Cameras: Improving school safety shouldn’t necessitate reductions to on-campus Internet speed and capability. Security cameras can be significant consumers of bandwidth, which can lead to compromised video quality, limited video storage, and even system failure. It’s important to find school surveillance cameras so schools don’t have to choose between expensive bandwidth upgrades and child safety in school. In fact, a surveillance solution with sufficiently low bandwidth consumption can even enable bus cameras for school bus video surveillance.
Affordable: Most school officials unfortunately have razor-thin school safety budgets, so it’s necessary to prioritize affordability when searching for a campus safety and security option. Oftentimes, cheaper cameras possess lower camera quality and decreased footage usability, which jeopardizes K-12 and college safety. Instead, officials should consider vendors who offer 10-year product warranties, which make it easy for schools to offset costs of maintenance over time, as well as systems that offer high levels of coverage per camera.
How Education Stakeholders Use School Video Surveillance
Security and Campus Patrol
Can remotely monitor large areas more effectively
Can reduce bullying and optimize bullying intervention programs
Can keep intruders out without stationing security officers at each access point
Principals and Superintendents
Can see and track what’s happening at each school facility
Can remotely monitor day-to-day operations, as well as teacher and staff efficiency
Can use in campus security footage in disciplinary cases and liability claims
Can conduct campus functions and events more securely
Can enforce positive behaviors on campus
Final Takeaways: Using Video Surveillance for Campus Safety
From school bus security cameras to national bullying programs inspired by camera footage, there are endless ways surveillance can serve school officials willing and able to use it. Without surveillance in schools, K-12 and college campus security teams are risking a lack of visibility and streamlined process.
Put simply, it is this surveillance visibility that enables efficient, educated incident response—and it is this incident response that enables kids to be safe at school.