Looking to learn more about the different types of school and classroom CCTV cameras? In this guide, we offer insight into the different types of CCTV cameras we recommend deploying in and around a school. If you oversee school security, the aim of this guide is to provide professional insight into the correct choices of CCTV systems and camera types for schools.

The three main sections of this guide are:

  1. The different types of CCTV systems for schools
  2. External and internal security camera systems
  3. Types of CCTV cameras used in schools
School CCTV improves security

What are the different types of CCTV systems for schools?

Here we look at the diverse range of CCTV systems available to schools. For each system, we offer a short summary and the security threats they help to deal with.

To summarise, they are:

  • CCTV monitoring
  • Perimeter surveillance
  • Thermal CCTV

Let’s take a look at each system in a bit more detail.

CCTV monitoring

CCTV monitoring, otherwise known as monitored CCTV is a robust, cost-effective form of security. Compared to the costs of deploying security guards, CCTV monitoring can be up to 75% cheaper.

So, how does it work?

Your security cameras will be fitted with sensors.

When triggered, these sensors raise an alarm. An offsite security team will recieve this alert.

They then review the footage, and if they detect a security threat, the right authorities will deal with it.

IP CCTV systems

These offer high-resolution, scalable security solutions that help deal with a range of threats. IP CCTV systems, otherwise known as network security camera systems, are suitable for internal and external school surveillance.

Ultra HD CCTV systems

High Definition (HD) CCTV systems supply detailed camera footage which is essential when called upon in evidence.

On the subject of criminal investigations, prosecutors cannot rely upon black and white or grainy footage.

If the footage is deemed as poor quality, they will discard it as evidence.

Perimeter surveillance

Perimeter CCTV systems help schools to protect their site from external threats. Intruders and thieves will often scour a perimeter for vulnerabilities.

Additionally, gaps in fencing and easily scalable walls supply easy access to criminals.

These advanced CCTV surveillance systems help protect a school’s perimeter and can seamlessly be deployed within a remotely monitored security system.


Vehicle number plate tracking systems can be used as a form of access control as well as detecting known suspicious vehicles. ANPR CCTV camera systems can be used to spot cars exceeding the speed limit in the car park.

Worse still sex offenders, often patrol in and around the school gates.

If any of concern is spotted, the car registration can be stored in a database. When spotted, an alert can be raised for the school’s security team to deal with.

Thermal CCTV Systems

These systems offer advanced intruder and threat detection. Thermal CCTV systems are effective after dark and can form part of a well-designed perimeter protection system.

Perimeter security is important for schools covering vast grounds, and accurate detection after dark or in low light can be imperative to protecting a school.

Thermal CCTV cameras systems can also be deployed internally to track the movements of intruders if they gain access to the building.

Related reading: The different types of CCTV camera systems

School CCTV cameras

Internal and external CCTV camera systems for schools

The security environment at a school can be split into two clear areas:

  • Internal
  • External

Let’s have a quick look at each.

Internal CCTV camera systems

Internal school CCTV systems cover settings such as classrooms, corridors, reception areas, gyms and staff rooms.

In our professional opinion the best CCTV cameras for internal security include dome, bullet, fisheye, turret and corner.

External CCTV camera systems

External school CCTV cameras systems are deployed in and round playgrounds, playing fields, bike sheds, the car park and around site entrances and exits.

In our professional opinion the best CCTV cameras for external school security include PTZ, turret, bullet and panoramic.

Related reading: How to improve school security

The different types of CCTV cameras used in schools

In this section of our guide, we focus on the available range of security cameras ideally suited to school security.

To summarise the different types suited to schools are:

  • Turret
  • Bullet
  • Fisheye
  • Corner (anti ligature)
  • PTZ
  • Dome

Let’s take a look at each CCTV camera type in a bit more detail.

Turret CCTV cameras

You can deploy turret cameras in internal and external settings. Sometimes referred to as eyeball cameras, they are a solid choice for monitoring corridors, classrooms and school gyms.

Although turret CCTV cameras are usable outdoors, they are much more suited to indoor use. In the next section, we will summarise why a bullet camera is better for outdoor use.

Bullet CCTV cameras

A bullet CCTV camera is a smaller CCTV camera ideally suited to external use. Bullet cameras have a large lens and can provide accurate detailed footage over distance.

Compared to turret cameras, they are much easier to install outdoors as they can be easily fitted to walls.

Fisheye CCTV cameras

A small discreet fisheye CCTV camera is the ideal choice for monitoring classrooms.

They provide wide angle coverage therefore perfect for monitoring classrooms and other internal areas of a site.

Additional to internal monitoring, fisheye CCTV cameras can be deployed in external environments. When mounted to walls on a bracket, they monitor wide areas and are a good choice for playground surveillance.

If you are looking for a comprehensive surveillance solution to monitor car parks a wall-mounted fisheye camera is also a solid option.

Corner (anti ligature) cameras

Corner CCTV cameras are often used as a discreet form of security. As you would imagine by their name, they are installed in the corners of internal areas and provide excellent coverage.

Furthermore, corner cameras are appropriate for educational establishments that cater to children with behavioural challenges or where there is a risk of self-harm.

Otherwise known as anti-ligature cameras, they help reduce the risk of suicide. It’s an uncomfortable topic to write about. However, one that needs mentioning.

PTZ (Pan, Tilt, Zoom) cameras

PTZ cameras provide an optimal level of threat detection and situational analysis. If a potential threat or situation is detected, PTZ cameras can be used to zoom in on the target providing the security operative with an accurate analysis of the event as it unfolds.

As with all CCTV systems, footage is stored for evidence where needed.

Dome cameras

These CCTV cameras are robust and can withstand all the elements. This makes them highly suited to outdoor settings.

In terms of size, dome CCTV cameras are much larger than bullet cameras and therefore offer a visual deterrent to thieves and intruders.

You can also deploy dome CCTV cameras in internal environments.

Furthermore, due to the visual deterrent, students may well think twice before committing any offences in breach of school rules.

Related reading: School CCTV case study

Examples of crime affecting schools

In this short section of our guide to the different types of school CCTV camera systems we provide links to news reports of school vandalism, break ins, harassment and more.

Crime has an impact on schools all over the UK.

Here are some examples:

Article summary: The different types of school and classroom CCTV cameras and systems

As you can see there is a range of CCTV systems and security camera options available for schools.

With options covering IP, ANPR, thermal and remote CCTV monitoring here is a solution for all setting and security aims.

Furthermore, the mix of camera options is vast too.

Dome, turret, PTZ and fisheye cameras, to name a few, all have their own purpose and should be carefully selected.

Installing school CCTV cameras with Safeguard Systems

If you are looking for an experienced security company with vast knowledge of installing CCTV systems for schools, our team is on hand to help.

At Safeguard, we have worked with dozens of schools including:

  • State schools
  • SEN & SEND schools
  • Independent and private schools

To talk to a security specialist call 0800 689 1835 or visit our school CCTV page for more information.