“What kind of security camera should I get?”
If you’re planning to upgrade your school or district’s video security, you’re likely asking this question. The truth is that security cameras aren’t one size fits all. Most schools have a range of different environments—classrooms, hallways, gyms, outdoor spaces, etc.—and using a single type of security camera won’t deliver the best coverage or experience.
In this post, we go over five school environments and share real-world security camera recommendations for each location. Each camera is incredibly easy to set up and the average deployment takes 75% less time than traditional on-premise installations.
By understanding your goals and the options available to you, you’ll get the most out of your video security system and ensure success for years to come.
In every school, there’s a balance between obtaining maximum camera coverage while also being conscious of total cost. With the R100, you don’t have to compromise; it hits the sweet spot between price and coverage while still delivering top-tier performance.
The R100 is the perfect camera for increasing camera density and eliminating blind spots in schools. This camera also gives you access to powerful AI Analytics—such as Unusual Behavior Detection, Mask Detection, and Facial Recognition—that schools can use to proactively protect students in nearly any situation.
High-performance, flexible, durable, and cost-effective, the R100 is a “swiss army knife" of security cameras that works well in any school environment.
Classrooms and entryways are key areas where you need reliable cameras, and for many schools, deploying cameras in these areas is a top priority.
Having security cameras installed above every entryway helps you identify who is coming and going. These cameras reduce blind spots and provide visibility even when security guards or hall monitors cannot be present. Additionally, if your security camera integrates with best-in-class access control solutions, it provides a powerful way to beef up your physical security: by allowing you to verify who is gaining access to specific areas and to receive alerts for suspicious or unauthorized people entering your facilities.
Security cameras in classrooms help protect students and teachers and increase accountability. They also open up the possibility of sharing live streams so that parents can check on their children. Birch Tree Academy does this with great success—they share password-protected live streams with parents, who find great comfort and value in being able to check on their young children throughout the day.
To cover classrooms and entryways, many schools use the R2 camera. The R2 is the R100’s faster and more powerful sibling. With 5MP video and on-camera edge processing, the R2 delivers a crystal-clear picture and can identify events at lightning speed.
The R2 also works with the entire line of Rhombus sensors. You can seamlessly connect door sensors to further secure entryways or use asset tags to ensure that expensive items (like laptops or tablets) never leave the classroom. If you plan on enhancing your video security with IoT sensors, either now or in the future, the R2 is an excellent way to futureproof your system.
Hallways and corridors are best covered by cameras that can capture long, narrow environments without any blind spots.
The R2-180 is a 180° camera specifically designed for long hallways and corridors. This camera uses a fisheye lens to capture a wide panoramic view of the environment. Rather than needing multiple cameras to get coverage of one hallway, one R2-180 can cover the entire length of a corridor. This lets you cut down on hardware and efficiently increase visibility. The R2-180 is also compatible with all Rhombus sensors, delivering a comprehensive view of your entire school campus.
Gyms, cafeterias, and auditoriums are large areas with a lot of open space to cover. The most efficient solution for this kind of environment is to have one camera that can provide panoramic views of the entire area.
The R360 camera is perfect for these open spaces. It provides a complete 360° view of your environment, so you can cover a huge area with one camera. Less hardware means less IT labor and maintenance, and also helps create a nicer aesthetic for schools that prefer to keep camera presence discreet.
With the R360, you can choose between multiple viewing options:
With full coverage and multiple views to choose from, the R360 is a powerful solution that increases visibility in open environments like gyms, cafeterias, and auditoriums.
Immersive View with the Rhombus R360 provides live, real-time dewarping.
Parking lots, pickup areas, and outdoor sports fields such as football, soccer, and baseball fields will benefit most from a camera that can deliver high-quality video at long distances, and that supports intelligent face and license plate recognition.
The R400 is a 4K camera with 3X manual zoom that’s built for performance and maximum video clarity. It delivers ultra-sharp video from extreme distances and has AI analytics built right in.
The R400 delivers the best performance for license plate recognition and facial recognition, making it perfect for outdoor sporting fields and parking lot pickup zones. For example, with license plate recogntion, schools can add trusted license plates for parents picking up their kids and school staff can receive alerts when an unidentified or unauthorized vehicle is attempting to pick up a student. Additionally, Rhombus’ License Plate and Facial Recognition require only one camera to capture contextual and specific video details at scale.
When choosing security cameras for your school, it’s important to understand your goals and the options available to you. We hope this guide has given you a clearer picture of the type of video security solution that you want for your school.
For more on choosing a school video security solution, read: How to Choose the Right Video Surveillance System for Education
As video surveillance on campus becomes the norm, some thought leaders are also calling for caution. Video security shouldn’t be a knee-jerk reaction to safety issues—it should be a thoughtful assessment made with proper consideration for student safety, privacy, and equity. This article provides a four-step framework for developing school video surveillance policies that are effective, thoughtful, and responsible.