Every parent wants to know that their child is safe at school. They want to feel like there are teachers, administrators and other staff members looking out for their children and working to ensure the environment is free from dangerous conditions and people.
Sadly, there are children who get hurt at school; they suffer physical or emotional injuries at the hands of other students, teachers and others. When these troubling incidents occur, parents often wonder if something could have been done to keep their child safe. One increasingly common suggestion is to place cameras inside classrooms.
The case for cameras
Those who are in favor of putting cameras in classrooms say that doing so can provide an extra measure of protection, not just for students but also for teachers and administrators.
Allowing cameras in the classroom could provide indisputable evidence if an altercation occurs, and knowing that they are on camera could prevent parties from engaging in bad behaviors.
Supporters say that even if such a measure would not be feasible in every classroom, it could be beneficial for those classrooms that have especially vulnerable students, like special education classrooms.
The case against cameras
Not everyone agrees that having cameras in classrooms is wise. Arguments against this solution range from violating the privacy of people in those rooms to creating an uneasy environment. When people know they are being recorded, they could be under stress to act a certain way, which can take the focus off learning.
Further, some people would rather spend the financial and personnel resources it would take to install and monitor the cameras elsewhere.
There are also concerns when it comes to storing data collected on cameras, deciding who will have access to it and assessing how to use recorded footage. Would recordings only be to monitor safety, or could schools use them to assess teacher performances and compliance with special education requirements?
What do you think about having cameras in classrooms? Would they be reassuring to you as a parent, or might they cause unnecessary surveillance and disruption?