Da Nang deters school violence with facial recognition cameras

In the eyes of many people, schools should be places where young people can learn valuable things, make friends, and create beautiful memories. Unfortunately, this is not the case in many schools in Vietnam, where increasingly, students as well as teachers have to endure daily emotional strain when being bullied and threatened on school grounds.

In a bid to eliminate any possibility of school violence, inappropriate behavior, and theft, Da Nang’s Department of Education and Training is planning to install infrared cameras with facial recognition features in Da Nang’s schools.

The camera system will be trialled in Trần Phú and Nguyễn Hiền High Schools

79 and 58 infrared cameras will be installed in Trần Phú High School and Nguyễn Hiền High School respectively, in areas such as libraries, school yards, classrooms, and school gates.

Da Nang school smart camera
Image credit: Trường Trung Học Phổ Thông Trần Phú

Connected directly with the city’s crowd analytics network, these recognition cameras can identify a person from a camera footage frame, analyze the action on camera, and issue warnings about possible violence. It also has additional features such as transmitting sounds to and detecting the level of light in every classroom.

After evaluating the results of the cameras, Da Nang’s Department of Education and Training will consider installing them in more schools in the city.

smart camera Da nang schools
An infrared camera
Image credit: Web Sinh Viên

“The new camera system will help cultivate positive habits and civil behavior among the students. Their awareness of camera surveillance will motivate them to adjust their behavior in a more appropriate way,” said Mdm Thuan, Head of Da Nang’s Department of Education and Training.

School library_smart camera
The cameras will be installed in school libraries
Image credit: THPT Lâm Thao

Smart cameras can also spot unusual activities, break-ins, and vandalism, which can enhance the protection of school property and the students’ well-being.

Da Nang School install camera
Image credit: Thanh Nien

School violence in Vietnam

Despite the public condemnation of school violence and constant media coverage about the issue, school violence remains a problem that requires the regular monitoring cameras can perform. After all, girls clad in uniform wrestling on the grounds or boy gangs settling their feuds at school gates are familiar pieces of news that we’ve been hearing increasingly for the past few years.

Vietnam students fight
Image adapted from: vietnamnet

Worse still, there are many cases in which the videos are purposefully recorded by bullies showing the victims being ganged up upon, and then shared widely on social media. Cases like these often leave the victims deeply traumatized and afraid to return to school.

Figures cited from the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Public Security show that in Vietnam, there were 18,500 cases of school violence involving both teachers and students between 2011 and 2018, says VnExpress. In the first three months of 2019 alone, the Ministry of Security recorded 310 cases of school violence across the country, mostly among secondary and high school students. Many more cases go unreported to teachers and authorities.

Da Nang school tries to create a safer learning environment for students

Numerous solutions have been used to deal with school violence, such as TV talk shows featuring psychologists and students about school violence and discussing imposing tougher punishments, but bullying in schools is still on the rise.

Since prevention is better than cure, we’re glad that Da Nang is making efforts to eradicate school violence by installing smart cameras for more effective surveillance of students’ behavior. Hopefully, these cameras can help usher in a healthier and safer learning environment, where students and teachers can feel safer and concentrate on school work.

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Cover image adapted from: Web Sinh Viên and Trường Trung Học Phổ Thông Trần Phú

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