New facial recognition cameras installed


Nikki Gomez, Staff Writer

Recently, Milton upgraded its surveillance system by adding facial recognition features to the hallway cameras. Avigilon, the software that was implemented by Fulton County, is able to recognize faces and view everything that happens throughout the school.

Principal Brian Jones says, “The district is upgrading the cameras throughout all the schools. This was planned for us two years ago and we were pushed up the list for the installation.”  The new software was installed in early October. The cameras serve as an extra security measure and administrators are able to view them anytime. The main concern some students may have is if the cameras recognize every face.

The cameras have a feature where administrators are able to select which face the cameras should recognize. Principal’s secretary Tania Nevelos says, “We tag somebody and ask where this person is who matches this description. We will tag a person who looks like that. We don’t tag anyone in particular unless there has been an incident.”

There are 122 cameras placed purposefully throughout the school. The monitor where administrators can view what is going on is located in the front office and has four camera views. Administrators can choose from a list which camera they want to view. When a person walks across the camera, the administrators watching will see a red dot appear on the screen; a blue dot represents no motion.

The new feature ensures the safety of the students and decreases criminal behavior throughout the school.  School Police Officer, Officer Cash says, “We’ve been able to solve more thefts than we would’ve before and it helps us to check out areas in the school that wouldn’t have been looked at before. It is a great improvement than what we had before.” While the cameras assist administrators with resolving issues, there are ambivalent thoughts about the new cameras from the students.

Some students disagree that it is a good update. Junior Brandon Barnes says, “I think they are useless and the school’s time and money can be used somewhere else. I do agree that security is a concern but the school is not justified in going all out.”

However, some students think the cameras have a positive aspect to it. Senior Maia Stephens says, “I think it’s a good thing because I know why they’re using them…the whole point of them is to recognize who is coming in on a regular basis. I don’t think it would prevent anyone from entering the school but it can recognize someone who probably shouldn’t be here.”

Despite disagreement among the students, Milton will continue to use the cameras to monitor movement throughout the school.