School safety is a serious concern for many parents, teachers and administrators across the United States. Houston video surveillance systems are designed to allow school officials to monitor activities in all areas of the facility. Altercations between students, vandalism and unauthorized entry into the school are all potential threats to the safety of students and staff. By investing in Houston commercial security systems customized to suit the needs of your educational institution, you will provide the best protection for your students and teachers.
The Legal Aspects of Video Surveillance
Certain legal restrictions are placed on the use of video surveillance materials as they pertain to students in the educational setting. Some of the most relevant legal principles are derived from the following sources:
- The Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution puts limits on searches and prohibits unreasonable searches. In recent years, this has been interpreted to allow surveillance of public areas and other places in which a person has a low expectation of privacy. Bathrooms, showers and locker rooms, however, offer a greater expectation of privacy and are generally off-limits for Houston video surveillance cameras.
- Video cameras that also record sound may be subject to the provisions of the Electronic Communications Privacy Act of 1986. This act prohibits the capture of audio communications unless at least one party has consented to the recording of the conversation. Posting signs to alert students and teachers that their conversations may be recorded could potentially mitigate the risk of violating the law. In general, it is best to avoid audio recording unless one party to the conversation has already given consent.
- The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) protects the rights of students and parents to maintain confidentiality and access any surveillance involving their student. In general, parents have the right to access surveillance that might be used in a disciplinary action or that focuses primarily on their child and his or her activities
The rules applicable to school security systems differ significantly from most Houston office security systems. Working with an established video surveillance company can help achieve greater safety while remaining in compliance with the legality of surveillance in schools.
At Securecomm Technologies, our team will design and install Houston video surveillance and security systems that suit the needs of your school. We work with facilities across the area to promote a safe and secure environment for businesses, organizations and schools. Call us today at 281-290-8383 to schedule a demonstration of our systems or to get a quote for your buildings. We look forward to the chance to serve you.