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Cameras in classroom

Discussion in 'Teaching abroad' started by cherpat87, Aug 21, 2020.

  1. cherpat87

    cherpat87 New commenter

    Due to the current covid situation, my school has installed cameras in the classrooms and are planning to alternate between having half of our students come into school, and the others watch their classes live from their homes. Anybody else have a similar set up in their school ? I really don't think this mode of teaching makes sense, and I prefer not to be filmed. I was happy doing zoom lessons, as I would switch off my camera then share my screen.
  2. Mr robinson

    Mr robinson New commenter

    Same here-we are putting cameras in classrooms. I'm ok with it as some of our students are not in class.
  3. amysdad

    amysdad Established commenter

    I could accept this as long as there is a guarantee they are temporary and will be removed once everyone's back. If the kids at home are working live, then they will get as close as possible to the actual classroom experience this way, much better than seeing a head and shoulders on Zoom or Teams.
  4. libbyg

    libbyg New commenter

    Erm! Child protection issues??? Will the camera only see you or the kids in the class too? I personally think it will open a massive can of worms. SLT/parents? Sorry I’m very skeptical. I think there needs to be firm rules in this for teachers, SLT and parents.
  5. cherpat87

    cherpat87 New commenter

    We haven't been told much, about how exactly it will be done. And I agree with you about opening up a can of worms. We had some issues with the zoom classes, with parents recording with their phones and sending it to SLT to make complaints about teachers. Parents are already not happy that they are being charged full fees. Plus I do not like they idea of being on camera, as I do not know how the school will control it so it does not get in the wrong hands.
    clovispoint and libbyg like this.
  6. february31st

    february31st Established commenter

    We all know when something is introduced into the classroom it is never removed. We all know principals who dream of keeping surveillance on all staff 24/7. I can well imagine having to sit down with a principal to discuss a recorded lesson as a parent has complained I did give their dear child the necessary attention they richly deserves and paid for.

    Welcome to room 101.
    clovispoint and libbyg like this.
  7. Yoda-

    Yoda- Lead commenter

    Your performance could be shared without your permission or knowledge. You are now in show business but without a detailed contract to protect you. Imagine being on YouTube forever.
    HelloWanderlust and cherpat87 like this.
  8. cherpat87

    cherpat87 New commenter

    This is exactly my point, I am just not sure what to do. I was asked initially whether I would be okay with being filmed, and I said no, however they have gone ahead and installed cameras in all the classrooms...
    clovispoint likes this.
  9. hhhh

    hhhh Star commenter

    One politician, according to a post on here, is certainly not in favour of 'images' of schools being broadcast- is it a case of 'it's fine to let schools go back, but not to let the public see how dangerous and crowded they are'?
    It might be useful for people to see what actually goes on. Also, some children might behave much better if they knew they were being recorded. I don't know the legal issues, though, you'd have to check with someone qualified to answer that.
    Interests me that you say it's because a lot of kids won't be there-so your school is refraining from full reopening on safety grounds, is it? And is that in a place that's more, or less, dangerous than the UK?
    Catgirl1964 likes this.
  10. clovispoint

    clovispoint Occasional commenter

    Cameras in the classroom are filming everyone, not just you, so all parents need to be okay with it too. It is a child protection issue as, even with reduced children in class, there is likely to be misbehaviour- imagine hugging being caught on camera! Cameras record every interaction and not the contexts that surround them. It's a policing tool for staff and children.

    Are the videos just live streamed or recorded? Are they being archived, published, protected behind a firewall? And that's the recordings you have control over- parent capture could go anywhere.

    The whole idea is ridiculous, Google Meet has been bad enough. It is unlikely to happen to most people but everyone knows of that parent with too much time on their hands and axe to grind.

    Huge no from me, I would be refusing, this is a big change in employment circumstance regardless of the situation we are now in.
    HelloWanderlust and Catgirl1964 like this.
  11. Mainwaring

    Mainwaring Lead commenter

    The owner of our high tech school in India installed CCTV cameras in every classroom and office and encouraged me to 'observe' the teachers to ensure that they were doing what they should. I never bothered to install the software on my PC because any HT worth his salt knows what's going on without resorting to spy cameras. The owner showed me how he could access the CCTV from his off-campus residence but as the demonstration focused solely on a young admin assistant with a stupendous bosom I gathered that his interest was not primarily educational.
    Catgirl1964 likes this.
  12. GeordieKC

    GeordieKC Occasional commenter

    Not disagreeing with previous posters, but the choice might well be do this or we will cut salaries. So perhaps there is little choice but to make the best of the situation,

    Some things I would want (and they do NOT address all the issues raised by previous posters):
    • teacher controls for the video feed switching between: computer (for slideshows, videos and interactive whiteboard), live video from the classroom and a static image
    • teacher controls audio switching between: off, teaching microphone or computer sound
    • camera focused on the whiteboard, with a predefined area where the teacher will be in the picture.
    • microphone set to pick up the area by the whiteboard, but to minimise noise from elsewhere
    • two devices: a standard teacher computer to run the lesson and a second device to control the video stream
    • a wireless microphone for when the speaker is not at the front of the classroom
    • very good WiFi so that the video stream does not impact use of internet in the lesson
    • a screen positioned so the teacher can see students not in the class with a "hand up" feature so that they can ask questions
    • a supportive management with no tolerance for misuse of the video stream
    • ability to edit and then publicly post (or not) the video from each lesson
    Some things I would hate (because not good for the lesson video stream, but could be used for monitoring):
    • An "always on" video feed controlled remotely. Teacher
    • A wide angle camera at the back of the classroom. Giving the viewer the ability to see distractions, but making it difficult to for them to see the board.
    • An "always on" microphone. Picking up all sound in the classroom.and possibly obscuring the teacher's voice with normal classroom noise.
    • A camera on the projector screen. Easy way to degrade quality take a picture of a picture.
    • A permenent installation
    • A lot of budget spent on what will hopefully be a short term issue
  13. ACOYEAR8

    ACOYEAR8 Star commenter

    I'd buy something small, pocket-sized and discrete which jammed the bl**dy thing.
    Catgirl1964 likes this.
  14. bigfatgit

    bigfatgit Occasional commenter

    I once judged a beauty contest in Cardiff
    The winner had 36 double Ds
    I thought, even by Welsh standards, that's a long surname

    I'll get my coat
    gone east and s0830887 like this.
  15. cherpat87

    cherpat87 New commenter

    Thank you for this, some very good ideas, and I will be putting it to management. Although I don't think they really considered any of this.
  16. Mainwaring

    Mainwaring Lead commenter

    That's a lot of lisping especially if she was only thixteen.
  17. colacao17

    colacao17 Lead commenter

    There is an assumption in some of the school plans I have seen that the teacher will be mostly static at the front of the class and that nothing interesting goes on elsewhere.

    I am sure, that once it's pointed out to them, arrangements can be made to record science demos going on elsewhere, but so far, what I've seen from my own school, clearly comes from people who do not realise how a real classroom functions and who so far have not asked for teacher input.

    We will see.
  18. BFP

    BFP New commenter

    Colacao17 - You make a very valid point. The students at home will NOT get even a fraction of the experience of the students in the classroom. The essence of teaching & learning is the interaction.

    Even if a school guarantees the video is stored securely, a troublesome parent or student can / will record on their phone and use for cyber-bullying purposes - and the School management will not be able to trace this.

    As a good teacher tends to move about the room a lot, standing beneath the camera, i.e. out of view may become a good place from which to manage the lesson.
    Catgirl1964 likes this.
  19. clovispoint

    clovispoint Occasional commenter

    Control is the key thing. You don't want someone finding a video of you from 4 years ago, getting something 'wrong' when they look up your name prior to interview.

    I get the impression that a lot of parents do really think we stand at the front of the room and teach- children passively listen. It seems to be what some expect online. Overall the loudest voice seems to be the one being pacified at the moment. We have very mixed reports in satisfaction- most parents happy but we react to the unhappy ones.

    What I have been most impressed by is the children since we have returned- they are so geared up for online learning.

    I should point out I meant children hugging! Parents could be scrutinising the virus safety measures.

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