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More Cameras Used In School Bathrooms

NBC 6 | December 22 2005

Last week, Blackfoot High School officials were able to identify a student who was leaving threats on a bathroom wall. They found out who it was by looking at tape from the school's surveillance cameras. Tammy Scardino spoke with Blackfoot administrators and has more on the value of having these cameras.

Ever since the massacre that occurred at Columbine High School in 1999, security cameras have become an integral part of school security. District 55's superintendent says they couldn't do without.

It's not uncommon to see cameras in high schools across the nation and here in Southeast Idaho.

Lance Kress, Blackfoot High principal: "We have the cameras strategically located so we can pretty much view the entire school throughout the day."

The presence of the surveillance cameras help monitor the safety of students and faculty at Blackfoot High School. Altogether, 44 cameras are placed in various locations, projected on four monitors. This enables the school resource officer to keep track of what's going both inside and outside of the school without ever leaving his office. Superintendent Dewane Wren says safety is the district's number one priority.

Dewane Wren, District 55 Superintendent: "Our aim is not to always be eavesdropping on kids - that's not our goal. Our goal is to have safe schools and we use them as we need them."

Wren says he thinks most students appreciate the cameras as well.

Dewane Wren, District 55 Superintendent: "We don't have that many issues at all. We have 99% of our kids that are great, but there are always 1% that cause issues. But we're ready for them."

Lance Kress, Blackfoot High principal: "I think they relieve a lot of concerns on my part for the safety of the school, and so I think it's something we all have to have and every school will have them eventually. It's a great tool."

...Making schools safer one camera at a time.

The security system at Blackfoot High was installed about five years ago.

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