Georgia school implements Toshiba CCTV system

Thomson-McDuffie Junior High School uses both IP and analog solutions to monitor campus

Along with the IK-VR01A cameras, several Toshiba IK-65WDA wide dynamic range cameras were installed on the school’s exterior walls to monitor parking lines. With its 133X dynamic range, the IK-65WDA lets administrators view subjects in extreme backlight situations, capturing both very dark and very light images within the same frame.

However, it is Toshiba IK-DF02A dome cameras that do the bulk of the surveillance work at Thomson-McDuffie Junior High School, providing a host of technical advantages including 3 axis adjustable 350° pan and 146° tilt, 520 TV lines of resolution, a tamper-resistant cover, and a clean 50dB signal-to-noise ratio for digital recording. More than 60 of these cameras are installed throughout the school’s hallways and at entrance doors. To preserve privacy, no IK-DF02A’s are placed in school bathrooms, locker rooms, or within classrooms.

Noted Sergio Collazo, National Sales & Marketing Manager for Toshiba: "The installers like the IK-DF02A because its ships fully assembled, plus its mounting holes line up with standard electrical junction boxes. Students know the cameras are watching them as they move through the school day, but the IK-DF02A’s unobtrusive appearance keeps it from being intimidating. It is a good looking dome."

Analog to Digital

Altronix Hub-Way VPD Combiners were installed with the cameras to transmit video and power over the CAT5e. Images are digitized in MJPEG format and archived at up to 120 PPS per camera on five 16-channel, 2000 GB Toshiba Surveillix digital video recorders. The rack-mounted DVR’s are kept in five separate data closets located throughout the school. Forward-thinking Graybar engineers kept the distances between the closets and the cameras to within the 100 meters required for future adds of IP cameras.

Thanks to the DVR’s networking capabilities, authorized staff now simply log-on to their computers to view live images. They can then make a judgment as to whether action is required. Additionally, a centralized visual checkpoint was devised in the intersection where the school’s six hallways meet. There, a large color monitor is mounted to allow staff to watch all hallways simultaneously simply by standing in one spot. Finally, the school provided network IP addresses to the Thompson Police Department so that in the event of an emergency, live camera images can be accessed via the school’s wireless infrastructure to officers within 150 feet.

"The goal of the project was to successfully support the safety and security of students and staff, plus leave the door open for easy expansion and growth," noted Umbarger. "Everyone on the team worked to ensure that the system meet present security standards and anticipated future needs without disrupting the educational process."

Thomson-McDuffie Junior High School is now an example of how technology improves both education and safety. Following its opening, police officers and representatives from other schools have visited it to find out more about how they can deploy similar approaches to fight against school crime and vandalism.

"We think it's going to be a model school in Georgia. We think that we're going to have a lot of visitors to come to our school and see what it is that we're doing differently,” noted Dr. Mark Peterson, McDuffie County School Superintendent.

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