Cameras pictured on B-P campus

BROADALBIN – When students come to school next year in the fall, they will notice dozens of new security cameras in all the Broadalbin-Perth Central School District campus buildings.

Superintendent Stephen Tomlinson said the cameras are just one of many security measures that have or will be implemented to prevent a tragedy such as the Sandy Hook school shooting from occurring on the district’s campus.

“A student will not be able to walk in one of our buildings without being seen,” Tomlinson said. “That is a level of safety and security that is needed in today’s environment.”

At Monday’s Board of Education meeting, the safety feature was discussed as part of using the remaining money out of the $2.1 million capital project previously approved by voters last year.

The capital project’s primary focus was to repair the roofing at the high school and the Perth building.

However, District Treasurer and School Business Administrator Marco Zumbolo said a portion of the estimated $200,000 still available can be used on the security camera updates.

Tomlinson said the district doesn’t expect to pay more than $50,000, which will cover the cost of about 50 to 75 new cameras.

He said in a short amount of time the technology and clarity of the cameras has advanced while the price has declined, which is a benefit to the district considering it only has one camera on the inside of any building. The district presently has one camera in the AP room, located within the high school.

Tomlinson told the board the new cameras will primarily be located in the hallways. He said the only classroom cameras will be in rooms that hold expensive equipment, such as computer labs.

He said each school office will have stations where the view from the security cameras can be seen. The camera feed also could be observed from any location-including off campus-by certain school administrators with a portable device.

The Greater Johnstown School District has a similar system at the Knox Junior High School, and it has been able to use the camera system to settle disciplinary issues where students have different stories of what actually occurred during an incident, Tomlinson said.

“They noticed an immediate change in behavior,” Tomlinson said.

He said the village Police Department and the Fulton County Sheriff’s Office also will be able to tap into the camera feed within seconds if they need to.

Tomlinson and Zumbolo said they are still in the process of preparing the request for proposals for the cameras, which will be sent out in the coming months. The new system will be installed before next school year.