Jul 3 2008 by Graham Fraser, Hamilton Advertiser
CCTV cameras will be put on buses travelling to Calderside Academy in an effort to improve children’s safety.
The Blantyre school is one of four in South Lanarkshire, along with Lanark Grammar, which will try out the new safety initiative.
Councillors on the Education Resources Committee agreed the proposals at a meeting on Tuesday, held at the council’s headquarters in Almada Street, Hamilton.
Larry Forde, South Lanarkshire Council’s executive director of education resources, said in his report: “To enhance safety and child welfare, it is proposed to pilot the use of CCTV on secondary school vehicles.
“It is envisaged that over time this will reduce the need of attendants on double-decked vehicles.”
The pilot project will take place on buses travelling to Calderside, Lanark Grammar School, Cathkin High School in Cambuslang, and St Andrew's and St Bride's High in East Kilbride.
Councillors also agreed to issue a corporate South Lanarkshire Council bus pass to all those pupils entitled to school transport from the new term in August. From August 2009, it is proposed the bus passes are improved to include a photograph of the pupil.
Councillors have also agreed changes to privilege transport on the school buses.
Places will be granted to children with exceptional circumstances on a school bus providing there is a spare place on an existing school contract. The council will give priority to:
* pupils whose family circumstances have been disrupted due to a health condition which affects their parent or carer.
* pupils whose family circumstances have been disrupted due to significant change to their home life.
The new plans will be in position for the new school term in August.
Councillor Graeme Horne welcomed the news. He commented: “Of course, if CCTV increases the safety of children on the buses then it should be welcomed.
“The large majority of pupils using the service to Calderside do so without incident, but there have been some problems with a few pupils on the buses.
“The new CCTV will enable the council to catch those who are causing the problems.”