It was a different day and age when many of Clear Creek ISD’s campuses were built, said Erich Kreiter, director of safe and secure schools.
Currently, each of the district’s 45 campuses keeps security cameras at the entries and exits, common areas and parking lots.
When a $367 million bond passed in 2013, the district rebuilt McWhirter Elementary School and Clear Lake High School. With those rebuilds, the district was also able to install digital security cameras in each of those buildings.
The rest of the district’s campuses still have analog cameras, Kreiter said.
“With analog cameras, the picture is distorted,” Kreiter said. “There’s no zoom-in and no pan feature.”
Upgrading cameras is like upgrading computers, he said. The older cameras contain outdated technology.
Today, the district is looking to make its campuses as safe and secure for students as possible.
If the $487 million bond passes, $8.1 million will be devoted to new and enhanced safety and security measures districtwide.
The proposed bond would result in a $0.035 tax rate increase. This would equate to a $5.47 per month increase for a home owner of a median home valued at $223,635.
“Under this proposed bond, every campus will be touched in some way by these upgrades,” Kreiter said.
To date, it’s been about 10 years since any kind of upgrade has been made to many of the district’s security cameras.
The upgrades that could be made by a proposed bond would add fish-eye and PTZ or, Pan-Tilt-Zoom, cameras, which is able to take video of a larger area and zoom in to see specific images such as a license plate, Kreiter said.
“We would be able to do a lot more with less camera,” he said. “It would give us better coverage and quality.”
District officials would use the bond money to also upgrade school alarms and badge access programs.
Like the security cameras, some of the alarm systems are also getting older, Kreiter said. If the bond passes, the district will be able to do some cabling at some of the schools, which would prevent false alarms.
The district also hopes to streamline the way employee access badges are handled as well.
Currently, access badges to the district’s various campuses are handled through seven separate systems, because of years of various upgrades.
Passage of the bond would allow district officials to convert all programs to one system, which would reduce the time it takes employees to become authorized to access their respective campuses.
“Technology gets better every day,” Kreiter said. “We’ll never be able to keep up, but we are committed to do what we can to keep systems in place to protect our students and facilities.”