How Much Are They Watching?

Nathan Dubrow and Nick Hawwa

Cameras in school, that is the question that’s been getting press around the country. For many years, the public schools of Ipswich have had few problems regarding theft or other small crimes. No matter the fact, Ipswich High School decided to put up cameras throughout the school where students are present the most. These areas included the main hallway and the cafeteria, as well as the various doors that lead to the outside from each of the places aforementioned. Making sure that the school is secure is important, as they want everyone to feel safe in the place where they learn.

Though security is the real reason to have the cameras, there’s also the concern from the students as to whether or not the school is going too far and may be listening in on what the students are doing. Is the privacy of the students getting thrown out the window so they can feel more secure, or does this work against them?

Students are supposed to feel secure when they go to school. Having a safe environment for students to learn is imperative in order for them to do well and succeed. But when a new variable is introduced to the students, does it change the way they think and learn? We asked a fellow student what they thought about the installation of the cameras, and he said, “I don’t really like them.”  For that student, it was clear that they didn’t like the idea of having people watch what you do all the time. Although this is one person’s strong opinion, this isn’t what everyone thought about the new addition. Another student believed that having cameras was a good idea, and that their implementation helped them feel more secure in their learning environment so that if something bad occurred, it would be known by the administration quickly and action would take place.

Although we don’t have many problems at our school, it has been shown that with the addition of cameras in schools, petty crime rates drastically decrease, if not stop altogether. This is another reason for putting cameras in. Since it is known that someone is watching you, it is less likely for someone to commit any kind of crime in fear of getting caught. Luckily, crimes such as stealing and vandalism don’t really happen in our school, but in theory, if it did happen, then the perpetrator would easily get caught with the use of the cameras. Whether or not you think your privacy is getting taken advantage of, it can still help keep any forms of crime to be nonexistent. Because it is a school, the term privacy may want to be reevaluated, as there shouldn’t be anything in particular that should be too secret that can’t be heard by the administration.

Having cameras in school can be a touchy subject, with people feeling two extremes on what they believe is the right thing to do. Although it can seem as if the administration is encroaching on your personal privacy, it likely isn’t so. The reason for having them is to make sure that the town, teachers, and students all feel safe at their school and that they have a good learning environment that can help them get the most out of their experience here. The administration is doing its best to keep everyone in a good place and make sure that everyone is where they’re supposed to be and are not doing anything they’re not supposed to be doing. Cameras can help improve student security and make sure they stay on track, and for that reason, they certainly aren’t always a bad thing to have around.