How Are School Security Systems Being Implemented?

In the aftermath of the Sandy Hook killings, schools around the country enhanced security measures, from increased security on campus to locking their front entrances and installing buzzer and video access systems for visitors.

The most important component of school security systems is security cameras that monitor students and prevent thefts and the entry of outsiders on school property.

Installing security cameras helps students focus on their studies and make them not worry about outside violence. They allow security personnel to do job-specific work and save money by avoiding burglaries and vandalism.

Most school security cameras are color mini cameras with wireless and night vision features that come with recording systems that may be analog devices such as CCTV monitors or VCRs or digital IP based systems connected to a web network. The CCTV monitors store activity on videocassettes while the IP devices stream live video directly to a web network.

The cameras feature pan, tilt, zoom and infrared recording options but generally don’t have microphones for audio recording. They can be used indoors and outdoors on a 24/7 basis.

Security cameras prevent vandalism, bullying, criminal activity and sexual predators. They are installed throughout outdoor play areas, cafeterias, hallways, parking lots and other school areas. In these spaces, there mere presence can act as a deterrent to those who would otherwise vandalize or trespass on a property. As well, from the interior of the building, security personnel may monitor several devices from a single interface on a computer or even a mobile device.

Installing security cameras in schools can be expensive because a number of cameras and other equipment are needed.

Security cameras are one of the access control methods being used for school security. Others are closed circuit television systems, weapon detection systems such as metal detectors and access control systems, such as electronic key cards, which can be used for visitors, staff and students and provide onscreen warnings of banned visitors.

The use of security guards and police officers is one of the most common school security measures currently being used. School resource officers assist administrators with student discipline issues and patrol school grounds, with instances of officers intervening in school shootings.

As districts look for grants or space within a budget, school security systems continue to be upgraded with new technology with school budget dollars earmarked to improving security at all schools, from K-12 to colleges and universities.

Donna J. Seymour