UK schools installing sensors in toilets to monitor students

05/02/2024 | Schools Week

Schools in the UK are installing sensors in toilets to tackle vaping, bullying and rowdiness. The sensors use artificial intelligence to listen for specific keywords and alert chosen staff members when they are detected. The sensors are not meant to monitor everyday conversations but provide an additional security layer to create a safe school environment. Some schools are pairing the sensors with surveillance cameras to capture students leaving bathrooms when the vaping sensors are activated.

In a statement, Madeleine Stone, senior advocacy officer at Big Brother Watch, said: "Secretly monitoring school bathrooms is a gross violation of children's privacy and would make pupils and parents deeply uncomfortable... No school should consider spying on children's private conversations and doing so is highly likely to be unlawful. This misguided surveillance poses a clear safeguarding risk and should be allowed nowhere near UK schools."

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Gilrs public toilets

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