Southwark School Is Addicted To Spy Cameras

Dean Nicholas
By Dean Nicholas Last edited 103 months ago
Southwark School Is Addicted To Spy Cameras

The oft-quoted canard that Britons are captured on CCTV "300 times a day" was exposed a few months ago by David Aaronovitch as dubious at best, highly inaccurate at worst. Yet that hasn't stopped one south London school from trying to make it a reality. Stockwell Park High has installed nearly 100 cameras in classrooms, corridors and play areas in order to scrutinise students. In a classic case of creeping normalcy, the school initially brought in the system to monitor perimeter fences and protect equipment from vandalism, but decided to steadily add more and more cameras, as they helped reduce truancy and ensured teaching standards were met. But like an addict, the school simply doesn't know when to quit: they've taken advantage of rebuilding work to slip in the comprehensive Classwatch system, rigging up a network of 28 cameras in classrooms, capable of producing sound and vision permissible in a court of law. Or, indeed, on a broadcast television system; if Channel 4 can get millions of viewers to watch a show with vapid wannabes performing dignity-stripping tasks, just think how popular a fly-on-the-wall expose of an inner city comp would be.

Last Updated 21 July 2009

M@

I give it three months, maybe six, before someone's accused of perving at the kids via the cameras, resulting in a huge tabloid backlash and withdrawal of the equipment.

Polstar

When I was teaching in a London Comp they brought in cameras in the toilets and we had them in some of the classrooms (where there was expensive equipment). The whole thing was ridiculous and reeked of Big Brother. When my laptop and various video cameras were stolen from my classroom the CCTV was facing the other way so the perpetrator was never caught! Pointless.

cobo04

I work in these sort of devices, not in schools (as yet..) but in the street.

I work with a company based in the US to install 360 degree cameras. No moving parts just a clever parabolic mirror and software to flatten the image to 2 x 180 degree strips. These camera are able to spot trouble and initiate a point and shoot camera to pan and zoom in to get a good view all on its own.

Therefore leaving no stone or theft unturned, so unlike the example of point and shoot cameras from Polstar. This is now a thing of the past.

Big brother just grew up