School BuildingWith acts of violence on campuses and in school buildings on the rise, educational institutions are seeking more effective ways to monitor activities and pinpoint suspicious individuals. In the pursuit of these goals, surveillance systems have become a primary line of defense, allowing educational institutions to identify and stop questionable behavior before it might become deadly.

Implementing a surveillance solution isn’t an automatic panacea, however. Educational facilities—especially those with large outdoor campuses—face special challenges. One of these is the complexity of isolating potentially dangerous individuals among very large groups of students and faculty moving through public spaces. This and other challenges make system component selection particularly important.

When advanced video surveillance systems are deployed and operated properly, however, the results and benefits can be substantial. The Urban Institute, an economic and social policy research organization, performed a study that evaluated security camera installations for their effectiveness. The Institute found that these solutions “…are an effective tool in reducing crime if deployed the right way, and they can be worth the sometimes substantial investment in setting up the systems.”

Specifically, the Institute found, the key isn’t simply to have cameras. Rather, success hinges on how the cameras are used, where they are placed and how many are deployed. Proactive monitoring through well-designed video management systems (VMS) also plays a role in reducing crime, the report noted.

Schools and campuses that implement such solutions gain more than the ability to monitor hallways and classrooms to prevent or intercept violent crime. These systems also help prevent less serious, but still troublesome activities such as vandalism, theft of school property, bullying and more.

Some can also provide remote support when monitoring isn’t feasible. For example, when the school is closed and halls should be empty, cameras can capture the movement of intruders through predefined fields of view, triggering an alarm and causing the activity to be recorded and flagged by the VMS.

LMI has helped numerous educational facilities identify and implement advanced surveillance solutions. Our expert technicians work closely with each organization to select appropriate camera models. We evaluate the facility and map out the best locations for cameras and monitoring stations, considering not only security but ease of service, privacy concerns and other variables. We can also help to identify an appropriate VMS and determine if the facility will benefit from add-ons such as access control systems integrated with student and faculty databases.

Companies we work with include Tyco’s Software House as well as ONSSI, 360iQ, Envysion, ExactQ and other leading providers. For more information, please give us a call at (770) 491-0343 or send an email to