Chicago Public Schools to Spend $76.3 Million on Security Upgrades

The three-year project will upgrade several hundred schools’ security cameras.   February 27, 2023

By Greg Zimmerman, senior contributing editor

The sad state of things is that school facilities these days can spare no expense when it comes to security. There have already been at least 80 mass shootings so far in 2023. 

Chicago Public Schools plans to spend $76.3 million over the next three years to upgrade school security cameras in about 430 school facilities, according to Block Club Chicago. The project will start with five high school and 58 elementary schools. Schools are being prioritized according to the condition of the existing security cameras. 

A statement released by CPS said that “In order to protect student and staff safety, CPS does not release the specific details of our school safety and security plans.” So, it's unclear what specific technologies are being installed or how they’ll augment the school district’s current security plans. 

According to the Block Club story, some in the district are questioning whether CPS is striking the right balance between increased spending on physical security and mental health care and awareness for students and staff. “We need care, not cameras, and staff are in crisis,” a teacher at a school involved in a shooting earlier this year said. “This is not the time to do more with less, nor is it the time to surveil or police our students.” 

Greg Zimmerman is senior contributing editor for FacilitiesNet.com and Building Operating Management magazine. 


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