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Students feel less safe in schools with indoor security cameras: study

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Tempe, AZ — Schools equipped with indoor security cameras can make students feel less secure, suggests a recent study from Arizona State University.

Researchers surveyed nearly 55,000 students from 98 middle schools and high schools in Maryland. Trained observers assessed the schools’ security measures, such as personnel and cameras. The researchers then examined “the association between school security officers and cameras and students’ perceptions of safety, equity and support,” the study abstract states.

Results showed that the students’ perceptions of all three characteristics were lower in schools that made “greater use of security cameras” inside the building. Meanwhile, a “moderate level of security camera use” outside a school was linked to higher perceptions of support, and the presence of security officers was linked to a greater level of safety.

“Our findings may suggest that outside cameras and security may be perceived by students as safekeeping, whereas inside cameras may evoke feelings of being viewed as potential perpetrators who need surveillance,” the study conclusion states.

The study was published online Sept. 6 in the Journal of Adolescent Health.

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