Body Cameras Could Become An Option For Teachers Sooner Than You Think

A growing number of states could soon install cameras in school classrooms with some pushing to allow teachers to wear body cameras.

Last year, video cameras were installed in classrooms at high schools in Georgia’s Effingham County, with the school board superintendent saying the move was part of an effort to “ramp up security measures within the district.”

Recently a Tennessee Senator, Mark Pody,  is proposing a bill that would allow teachers to wear body cameras with additional features.

The body camera would be attached to a lanyard and would be equipped with GPS tracking, audio and recording transmitting, and three color-coded emergency buttons. One for behavioral issues, one for medical issues, and one for active threats.

Sen. Pody explains that the behavioral button is for teachers having problems with a student.

“That button is going to then record whatever is going on and send it to the SRO in the building or the principal, and it could do both, the principal and the SRO. That way, if there is a disciplinary action going on with that child, the parents would be able to view that, and the teacher would be able to say this is what’s happening, and we need some help backing up what’s going on with that student,” Sen. Pody said.

Florida lawmakers are debating a bill that would allow schools districts to put cameras in classrooms and microphones on teachers.

The measure was proposed by state Representative Bob Rommel, a Republican from Naples.

“I think if we can do it in a safe way to protect the privacy of students and teachers, I think we should do it,” he told CBS Miami. “I haven’t heard a response good or bad from any teachers, but … it’s not their private space. It’s our children’s space, too.”

But Broward Teachers Union President Anna Fusco told the station a handful of Broward County Public Schools already has them.

“That is happening right now,” she said, though under limited circumstances.

School districts in Alabama are required to install cameras in special education classrooms after legislation was signed by Governor Kay Ivey last year.

The Charleston County School District has spent tens of thousands of dollars in the last five years on body cameras for its security management team.

During recent school board meetings, security guards are often seen wearing body cameras which has led some to wonder why they are being worn and how much they cost the district.

The Charleston County School District has spent almost $65,000 on 44 body cameras for its security and emergency management team between 2019 and 2023.

Twenty-four cameras is the largest order for the district, costing just over $30,000 in March of 2023.

These are the beginnings of what may become a new trend, teachers wearing body cameras and cameras in all schools and classrooms.  Let us know what you think. Is this a good idea or an invasion of privacy?

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