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Batavia schools planning video storage upgrade

District 101 operates 183 surveillance cameras

BATAVIA – It is a sign of the times that Batavia School District 101 operates 183 video surveillance cameras.

The main benefit appears to be deterrence.

However, the cameras have been useful in identifying suspects in cases of vandalism or fighting in the hallways, said district Director of Information Services Don Seawall.

Endless hours of video are stored on the district’s main computer system for 15 days, Seawall said, before the data is overwritten.

“There’s a lot of traffic that goes through that server,” Seawall told the Batavia School Board on April 12, as he recommended that the district spend $33,000 to acquire a video storage system dedicated solely to the network of security cameras.

“By implementing a new, separate system, performance would improve for all other servers and services around the district,” Seawall wrote in a memo to board members.

The added capacity also will allow the district to add cameras to the network, Seawall said.

The board is expected to approve Seawalls recommendation at its April 26 meeting.

Board President Cathy Dremel indicated her support for the proposal, saying the security cameras have been an effective deterrent to bad behavior.

Several years ago, Dremel noted, a student pulled a fire alarm at Batavia High School the day before graduation, creating a major disturbance.

The student was identified through one of the security cameras, Dremel said.

“It hasn’t happened again,” she said.

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