The benefits of CCTV camera systems in schools far outweigh the investment in them. In addition to providing an education to the nation’s children, one of the core responsibilities of a school is to keep its pupils safe.
The importance of CCTV in schools has been growing over time. New threats have emerged. Cast your mind back 20 years go, were teachers being attacked in class on a daily basis? Were hard drugs being taken at school?
When it comes to security, a well-designed school CCTV system helps provide pupil and teacher safety.
Furthermore, it gives parents peace of mind knowing their children are protected.
Those in charge of security in a school have to deal with a range of threats including:
- Anti social behaviour
- Drug dealing
- Vehicle crime
What are the benefits and importance of school CCTV systems?
To give those in charge of school security the tools to make the right security system investment, the team at Safeguard Systems have put together this guide.
We’ve split this guide on the benefits of CCTV camera systems in schools into 6 key areas:
- Preventing and monitoring anti-social behaviour
- Student and pupil safety
- Teacher Safety
- Unauthorised access
- Dealing with emergencies
- Out of hours
1. Preventing anti-social behaviour
Deterring vandals and thieves is definitely one the benefits of CCTV camera systems in schools.
Unfortunately, schools are often the victims of theft, vandalism, and other forms of anti-social behaviour.
Bike sheds are often targeted by thieves. When the school is closed, louts often break in and cause untold damage to windows, property and more.
Furthermore, anti-social behaviour also covers bullying, drug dealing, and alcohol-fuelled incidents.
These are all challenges those in charge of school security have to deal with, regularly.
A well designed HD or IP CCTV system offers a number of benefits when dealing with anti-social behaviour.
Well placed security cameras can ensure all known hot-spots are covered, and warning signs can help to deter petty thieves and vandals.
In the event of anti-social behaviour occurring, CCTV footage can be used to catch the culprits.
As the old saying goes, prevention is always better than the cure. Where schools have a high risk of crime, we’d recommend a monitored CCTV system.
Remote 24/7 CCTV monitoring systems ensure a school’s security cameras are watched over day and night.
This helps to spot more threats and reduce crime.
If that sounds of interest, we’ve recently written an article on the benefits of monitored CCTV.
2. Student and pupil safety
The importance of CCTV cameras in schools is highlighted by how they can help to keep pupils safe.
Parents expect their children to go to school in a safe environment.
Unfortunately, there are times when fights break out and other incidents occur, requiring investigation.
In the modern world it’s a sad truth that drug dealing has become an issue in schools.
Effective CCTV systems help spot and track drug dealers.
Unauthorised access is another issue around pupil safety. CCTV surveillance cameras can help spot known trespassers and gangs descending on campus from rival schools.
CCTV surveillance systems are an effective solution in helping schools tackle these security threats.
3. Teacher and staff safety
Everyone has the right to work in a safe environment – especially school teachers.
No one should go to work under the threat of violence, nor should they have to deal with other forms of anti-social behaviour.
In the main, most schools only experience isolated incidents of crime.
Unfortunately, there are some schools where the environment is more challenging.
In each case, a robust, effective CCTV system can be implemented to give teachers all round peace of mind, knowing they have a layer of protection in place against angry students.
For schools operating in a more challenging environment, where security is key, we would always recommend a remote CCTV monitoring service.
With CCTV monitoring, a school’s security camera system is monitored 24/7 by an offsite professional.
This means threats are spotted as they occur and can be dealt with swiftly.
4. Unauthorised access
For a school to remain a safe place to learn and work, knowing who is on site is paramount.
Schools can use CCTV to monitor the threat of trespass in a number of ways:
- CCTV cameras should be pointed at all known entrances and monitored for suspicious activity
- Pupils who engage with trespassers can be spotted and asked to speak to a teacher immediately
- Facial recognition surveillance cameras can be used to monitor the site for known criminals, gangs from rival schools and more.
However, using CCTV in this way is only part of the battle in keeping authorised visitors from entering a school.
To increase security, and reduce unauthorised access, we’d recommend investing in an effective access control system.
The benefits of access control for schools are vast.
A simple key fob door entry system can restrict access to the school for pupils and staff only.
Audio intercom and video door entry systems can help manage the flow of site visitors.
If a combination of CCTV and access control sounds like a winning combination for your school, you can visit our dedicated school security systems page for more information.
5. Dealing with emergencies
Over the last few years, crime in schools has been rising steadily. Only last year reports in the media showed how knife crime in schools was fast becoming a massive problem.
Those in charge of school security, clearly have a tough job on their hands.
Unlike in the USA, the UK doesn’t have a problem with gun crime in schools and mass shootings.
However there are plenty of situations where an evacuation is necessary to protect student and teacher safety.
In addition to knife crime, drug dealing and attacks on teachers have fast become the norm in schools throughout the UK.
Fires can start accidentally and in some cases deliberately.
Then, there’s the threat of terrorism.
In the event of a school needing to evacuate or lockdown, CCTV systems offer a number of benefits:
- Where someone enters the school carrying a knife, the CCTV cameras are used to keep tracks on them and The Police can be notified and directed to the right part of the building
- If there is an access control system in place, once the CCTV surveillance cameras have spotted an external threat, the school can be locked down to protect its pupils and staff
- In the event of a fire and the need to evacuate, the security cameras can be deployed to spot anyone left in the building, trying to make their way out
- Additionally in a panic situation, pupils can become separated. The security cameras can help track where these pupils go as they leave the school
6. Out of hours security (when the school is shut)
Schools are often targeted by criminals during periods when they are closed, such as weekends, holidays and nighttime.
When considering a school’s security needs, many have high value equipment, such as computers, iPads and sports equipment left on site. These valuable items need protecting.
Additionally, vandalism is often an issue, with windows being smashed, graffiti sprayed over the walls and playground equipment broken.
Depending on your school security set-up there are a few options to consider.
Schools with on-site security guards
For schools that have an onsite security team, watching over the CCTV cameras regularly, we’d recommend a HD or IP CCTV installation.
An effective site survey would indicate potential break-in points requiring special focus.
Additionally, the site survey enables the security systems installer to recommend the correct volume and type of camera to provide 360 degree security coverage.
Schools without an onsite security presence
In this situation, we would always recommend a monitored CCTV system.
Remote CCTV monitoring is the perfect solution for schools that don’t have onsite security.
With CCTV monitoring, your cameras are constantly watched externally by a team of security professionals, 24/7.
CCTV monitoring systems can be integrated with audio.
If your dedicated security professional spots a threat, they can communicate with the intruder, advising them the authorities are being contacted.
Potential crime detected. Potential crime deterred.
Summary – The Benefits of CCTV Camera Systems in Schools
By now, it should be clear the importance of a fully functioning, highly effective CCTV system for a school.
School CCTV systems help manage and deter a vast range of security threats.
Pupil and teacher safety is paramount.
Everyone has the right to go to school and work in a safe, secure environment.
Those in charge of school security systems have many threats to deal with. Theft, vandalism, drug dealing, and violence are regular occurrences.
When it comes to picking the right CCTV system for a school, there are many considerations to make.
Are the security guards protecting and monitoring the school 24/7?
How many cameras are needed for 360-degree coverage?
What current IT infrastructure is in place?
The list goes on.
If you’re currently thinking about upgrading your current security cameras, or are investing for the first time, you can ask us a question via our contact form.