Forest Hill School Upgrades To IP CCTV

Application   Oncam 360 CCTV system to local school in London
System type   CCTV upgrade
Location   London

Secondary school with a mixed sixth form, with around 1,200 students aged 11–18, had recently invested over £1million in state of the art IT equipment. The client is responsible for everything from classroom computers to the technology protecting the campus and therefore required a comprehensive video monitoring system to help protect the fabric of the school and keep staff and students safe.

The problem

After such a substantial investment in equipment, naturally the school wanted to put security and loss prevention measures in place to minimize the risk of theft or damage to their equipment. The new solution also needed to act as a deterrent to potential intruders and external threats to the site.

Not only did the school want to protect its assets, they also wanted to ensure that staff, students and visitors were as safe as possible at all times. Ofsted guidelines state that schools should “give high priority to getting their safeguarding procedures right, including securing the site”. This is where an intelligent IP based CCTV system can be used to help provide the level of security and safeguarding the school require.

The solution

Following extensive planning, site surveys and technical design from the team at VVSEC, it was clear the school needed an intelligent, bespoke CCTV system in place. The nature of an IT classroom brings unique challenges, including large monitors that shield users from a standard CCTV camera. Even two or three narrow-field cameras in a classroom would still leave blind spots. The school needed a solution that could provide full coverage of class rooms, at all times.

Upon site survey, VVSEC demonstrated a narrow-field camera in the school’s IT suite — but at only 130 degrees, the field of view wasn’t enough. A typical IT classroom in the school measures around 8m by 8m and can cater to around 30 students. VVSEC opted to install Oncams panoramic 360 degree five-megapixel cameras in the middle of each class room. This camera is more than capable of tracking everything and everyone in the room. There are no blind spots, so even the biggest monitor can’t hide anyone from sight. Designing a solution that uses just one camera rather than four or more in each area has saved the client a considerable amount of their budget.

VVSEC integrated the Oncam360s with the school’s existing Avigilon recording platform. This ensures that both systems and platforms can work seamlessly together, achieving significant cost savings for the client.

Once the solution had been approved by the school’s governors and teachers, the students and their parents were informed that it was being implemented. The school’s CCTV policy was modified to include the new cameras, and the school’s entry with the Information Commissioner’s Office was updated to explain how the video would be used, stored and managed.

VVSEC is successfully helping the school protect its IT investment by providing full situational awareness, deterring any risk of break-ins, theft or damage with Oncams intelligent panoramic cameras. Full maintenance visits will ensure that the system works to the specific needs of the client and that they get the greatest return on investment.