Halton Hills and North Halton newspapers
Security cameras to be installed at Catholic elementary schools
Independent & Free Press (Georgetown, ON), 6 Oct 2006, p. 11

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A security camera will be installed at the front door of each of Halton's 37 Catholic elementary schools over the coming months. The camera systems, funded by the provincial Ministry of Education at a cost of $4,000 per school, will allow the schools' front doors to be locked throughout the day. Visitors to the schools will have to speak to the office through an intercom system, and be viewed on a video monitor, before doors are unlocked by remote control. Larry Clifford, superintendent of education with the board, told trustees that the cameras were tested at six schools during a two-week pilot program last spring. A followup survey found that five of the six schools supported the use of the security system. Through questioning parents and board staff, Clifford said the surveys found that most believed the system improved school safety by ensuring unwanted visitors did not have access to the building. However, he added some parents felt the system ran counter to creating a welcoming atmosphere. "We don't want to create a fortress mentality here," he said. "We need to find the right balance." Clifford added that the board will be installing a swipe card system to allow teachers and school staff easier access to the schools. The systems are expected to be installed in all schools by Christmas.

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6 Oct 2006
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Security cameras to be installed at Catholic elementary schools