Cameras to keep watch on students
RICHMOND River High School isinstalling security cameras in response to a number of students engaging in anti-social behaviour.
The North Lismore school made the decision to install the cameras in several locations including the canteen, library foyer, bike rack area, the back car park and the front gate.
One source told The Northern Star students frequently used the toilet block to smoke cannabis.
A school newsletter issued earlier this month said cameras would assist in identifying a very small number of students who showed little respect for other people’s property.
There were reports that cameras would be installed at the toilet blocks to curb drug activity. But a NSW Teachers Federation representative from Richmond River High, Paul Jerred, denied this.
“The security of the school will be a priority so we can keep our students safe,” he said. “But students’ privacy will always be maintained.”
Mr Jerred said a change of policy meant one toilet block at the school was shut during class time and only re-opened during lunch and recess.
“There has been a recent change of policy in getting access to the toilets but I can assure you, studentsalways have access during class time and lunch and recess time,” he said.
Upper Sub-Regional P&C Council president Lyn Swaddle said it app-eared the school was not taking the issue of security lightly and were making it safer for the students.
NSW Teachers Federation North Coast organiser Nicole Major agreed and said the security cameras were not a way to spy on staff or students, but a way to ensure their safety.
Installing security cameras in schools across NSW was not uncommon, but some schools chose to support their security by not detailing their arrangements publicly, an NSW Department of Educationspokesman said
“Richmond River High School and others continually consider their security and how it might be improved to ensure the continued safety of students and protection of school property,” he said.