In an effort to continue creating a safe environment for students and staff, Naperville School District 203 officials will have access to school video surveillance at their fingertips – literally.
If the budget is approved this July, District 203 will be spending a total of $180,000 to install LexRay mobile security software on security cameras at . Cameras will also be installed at Naperville Central High School.
LexRay is a security camera monitoring system, which allows users to access real time video footage with little delay through a secure account on their mobile device.
Cameras could be remotely moved side-to-side or up and down simply by officials touching their iPad or iPhone screen; any place, any time. Users can also zoom security cameras in or out, potentially close enough to view a license plate number in the parking lot.
“The beauty of this tool is that officials can view these cameras online, in real time, at any time,” said District 203 chief information officer Roger Brunelle. “It’s going to increase their accessibility and increase response time.”
LexRay would record video wirelessly and also streamline the district's surveillance under one system. It currently operates on multiple types of camera software.
Last fall District 203 began talks with Lisle-based Lextech Labs, the company which offers the system, and initiated a pilot program with them.
District 203 plans to roll out a first phase this summer at a cost of $80,000. This includes installing servers at both high schools and replacing 25 cameras at Naperville North that aren’t currently compatible with the software. The remaining $100,000 would be used next year to replace 37 other cameras at Naperville North as well as to install cameras at junior high locations.
Once installed the software would be standard on 130 district security cameras, 65 at each high school. Access to the software will be granted to principals, assistant principals, deans, campus security, building managers and administrative building operations.
“All I can say is I’m glad they did not have this when I was in high school,” joked school board member Dave Weeks at last night's meeting.
Currently the only way district officials can access school security cameras is through laptops, which are hard-wired into the district’s network. According to officials critical time is wasted through this system, especially when it comes to notifying 911 response teams.
LexRay would allow the to gain instant access to all school security cameras in the event of an emergency and pinpoint the location within the school. Board members emphasized student safety during last night's board meeting, mentioning yesterday’s shootings at a school in Oakland, California.
The Naperville Police Department already uses LexRay to monitor the downtown area as well as parking garages.
“I was really comforted by the fact that you have instant access to what’s going on and also law enforcement has that same access,” said school board member Terry Fielden. “It’s pretty cool, I like the fact that it’s almost real time. I think it’s well worth the investment."