Coming Soon: An extra set of security cameras on school buses

RICHLAND, Wash. -- The Richland School District will soon have an extra pair of eyes keeping your kids safe on the school bus.

Dozens of rambunctious teens, a limited amount of space, and a single bus driver in change. You can guess what often happens.

"We find damage to our seats, kids hitting each other, kids not facing the font," says Dave Conrad, Transportation Direction with the Richland School District

Too often, bus drivers can't pay close attention to kids' bad behavior because they have to pay close attention to the road. But that will soon change.

Starting in January, the Richland School District will add cameras in both the front and backs of its school buses. Kids have known where the camera was pointed and have often caused trouble in the backs of buses..

Under the new system, any fight, any prank and any bullying is likely to be recorded.

KEPR asks a student, "would it change your behavior on the bus?"
"It would definitely keep me more alarmed," replies Josh Thompson, a 9th grader at Richland High School. "I wouldn't want to get caught or face the consequences."

The district can easily refer back to footage if there's ever a question. Richland plans to keep an archive of all recordings.

The changes cost the district upwards of $20,000, but when a bus full of kids is at stake, the district believes it's money well spent.

All 70 school buses in Richland currently have security cameras in the front only.

The district expects to equip every bus with the rear camera in the coming years.

RSD tells us there isn't a privacy concern because all of the buses currently record students.