Network cameras aid security at New York school district

CHELMSFORD, Mass. – April 2008 – Axis Communications, the global leader in the network video market, today announced that the Long Beach City School District on Long Island, NY, is using its network cameras to provide public school security.

"School safety has increasingly become a public concern as the National School Safety and Security Services reported 27 deaths, 85 non-death shooting incidents and 238 violent incidents ranging from stabbings to fights and Taser attacks across the nation during the 2005-2006 school year," said Fredrik Nilsson, general manager of Axis Communications Inc.

Bay Shore, N.Y.-based A+ Technology Solutions Inc. designed the security system along with Michel Richez, director of technology and information services for Long Beach City School District. In addition to the new security camera system, Richez manages the infrastructure for the entire district, its schools and offices, along with technology staff development, website and phones.

Our key objective on this project was to design a security system that would leverage the existing infrastructure and provide the benefit of high-resolution clarity for positive identification," said David Antar, president of A+. "From our experience the clear choice was Axis Communications network cameras for the edge devices and IPVideo Corporation's Dynaview Enterprise Class NVR as the backend solution."

Concrete walls presented wiring challenges. With a WAN already in place, the team chose IP-based network cameras from Axis Communications, because network cameras don't require as extensive wiring as analog cameras. In addition, IP-based systems can be implemented faster and provide higher resolution.

According to Richez, "The Axis products we chose delivered the crisp pictures we desired and IPVideo Corporation's NVR was user friendly. There was minimal training and my administrators could use and access the video easily."

Another benefit was that the WAN enabled Richez to maximize the system even further because he was able to establish virtual private networks so that the school officials and/or law enforcement could log in to the network from their laptops anywhere in the world at any time.

Two-phased Approach

A+ Technologies rolled out the school district's security system in phases. Phase one included security cameras and security management software in the 1,350-student Long Beach High School, the district's largest school.

Phase two will expand the system into various elementary and middle schools, plus the administration offices. It will also tie in an access control system – so that if an unauthorized person uses a security card to get into a room, Dynaview ( ) will send an alert by email or text message to the proper authorities.

Nearly 90 network cameras from Axis have been installed in the high school's interior. The cameras feature built-in, two-way audio capabilities, including audio detection alarm – enabling real-time communication with visitors or intruders. These cameras include the AXIS 216FDs for the interior, AXIS 225FDs for exterior locations and AXIS 215 PTZ for parking lots and playing fields.

Security System Pays Off

"In the last six months, the security cameras have more than met their worth," said Richez. "Students know they can't get away with much. It has been an amazing deterrent."

Richez also noted that school administrators were able to save thousands of dollars by using their existing WAN infrastructure in combination with network cameras' Power-over-Ethernet (PoE) capabilities and remote management.

A+ plans to make this security system even more sophisticated in the future, and because of the existing infrastructure and the flexibility of the IP-based system has a functional base from which to work. With plans to incorporate access control, building management systems and video analytics, the district will truly have an integrated security management platform with sophisticated alert capabilities -- either by email or text to the proper authorities.