PROCEDURES FOR THE USE OF VIDEO CAMERAS ON SCHOOL BUSES
The use of video cameras on school buses is aimed at increasing overall bus safety. Video cameras will function to prevent discipline problems from occurring, but are not to serve as a threat to normally acceptable behavior. Video cameras will not replace the responsibility of the driver to control the students riding his or her bus. All bus discipline policies and procedures remain in effect and the driver must continue to monitor the behavior of riders as has been done in the past. Additional information may be obtained from the Business Director and from School Committee Policy JICC and JICC-R.
- Video cameras will be used on school buses transporting students to and from school or extra-curricular activities at the discretion of the Business Director.
- Only appropriate school personnel as determined by the Business Director will review tapes. Parents will not be given the opportunity to review tapes unless their child is involved in a violation and is receiving disciplinary action as a result of that infraction, and only if that tape was used to determine the violation.
- Tapes recorded by the camera will not be used on a routine basis as a means of identifying discipline problems. As with monitors used in banks, the tapes would be used on an as-needed basis to determine violations.
- Tapes will not be used for "after the fact" discipline unless the driver reports a problem and needs the tape to sort out the necessary facts.
- Cameras will not be placed on buses where students may change clothes. (Buses transporting band members, for example.)
- At the beginning of each school year, parents and students will be informed of these procedures. This will include a copy of the School Committee’s video camera policy and procedures.
- Staff, students, and employees of the Bus Company are prohibited from tampering or otherwise interfering with the video camera equipment.
- Video recordings will be maintained as long as the Business Director deems it necessary to do so.
- All video recordings will be stored and secured to avoid tampering and ensure confidentiality.
- A written log will be maintained of the date the recording was made, the vehicle videotaped, name of the driver, the date of the viewing, and the signature of the viewer.
- Video recordings will be stored for three (3) school days after initial recordings, whereupon such recordings may be released for erasure. Video recordings held for review of student incidents or for other purposes deemed appropriate by the school committee will be maintained in their original form pending resolution. Tapes then will be released for erasure or kept as necessary as part of the student’s or other school record in accordance with established procedures.
- Viewing will be permitted only at school-related sites including the transportation office, the school buildings, or central administrative offices.
[Approved: December 12, 2000]
[Reviewed: December 2002]