Schools see the value of cameras

More and more school districts are seeing the value of camera systems in helping to protect campuses. In just the past week or two:

Skyline School in Portland, Ore., where 7-year-old Kyron Horman disappeared in June, now has cameras in the place due to a generous donation. This is the first school in the district to have cameras and administrators at looking at ways to pay for them on other campuses.

Brevard (Fla.) Public Schools is seeking a $150,000 federal grant to purchase and install cameras in three district high schools. It would be a matching grant, requiring the district to pay half the cost.

In Milton, Mass. a high school and middle school will be installing cameras this fall thanks in part to a $50,000 donation by a local family foundation.

Soon, all Tulsa (Okla.) schools will have cameras–48 in each high school and middle school and 34 on elementary campuses. Overall, 3,000 new cameras will be installed in the district–all connected to police headquarters, where they will be monitored in a new headquarters under construction.

A new high school in the Denver area opened the school year with 115 cameras.

There is a reason districts across the country are turning to video surveillance–and that is that it works. Cameras help to deter crime and identify the bad guys after a crime has been committed. Administrators who care about the safety of their students and staff are finding ways to pay for security upgrades.

PatrickFielPatrick Fiel is public safety advisor for ADT Security Services and a former executive director of school security for Washington, D.C. Public School System. He also served 22 years in the Army Military Police Corps, where his responsibilities included day-to-day security operations at the West Point Military Academy. During his time with ADT, Fiel has conducted more than 100 television, radio, newspaper, and magazine interviews as a public and school safety expert.

Follow Patrick Fiel on Twitter.

Laura Ascione

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