Potential Arrival of Security Robots at Local Schools

Team 1st Technologies

A growing number of educational institutions in the United States are implementing advanced security measures with the use of AI-equipped robots. These robots are designed to patrol the campus and identify any unwelcome intruders, enhancing overall school safety.

Concerns about school safety are prevalent among staff, students, and parents, especially in light of the potential for mass shootings. However, these AI security robots aim to mitigate these risks.

In New Mexico, Santa Fe High School has taken the initiative to pilot a new autonomous robot developed by Team 1st Technologies, an Albuquerque-based company, as reported by the Wall Street Journal.

This 400-pound robot, standing at 5 feet tall, relies on wheels for movement and is equipped with a mast-mounted camera that provides a 360-degree video feed to the school’s security team. Through the use of AI, the robot learns the layout and activity patterns of the school, allowing it to recognize any unusual or aggressive behavior.

When an intruder is detected, the robot can approach them, serving as a visible deterrent while providing valuable time for the security team to respond effectively.

Addressing concerns about privacy, the robot does not possess facial recognition capabilities. Additionally, during the pilot program at Santa Fe High School, school officials are responsible for handling the captured footage and determining the storage duration.

A teacher at the school expressed the potential benefits of the robot, describing it as a “seven camera dog” that could effectively monitor isolated areas of the campus that receive less attention from human security personnel.

Although Team 1st Technologies has waived the trial fees for Santa Fe High School, the standard rates for the robot are estimated to be around $65,000 for a full school year.

According to the Wall Street Journal, a range of companies are developing security robots tailored for educational institutions. If the 60-day pilot program in Santa Fe proves successful, these machines could be deployed in other schools as well.

Security robots are not limited to schools, as New York City is currently conducting trials of several robots for law enforcement purposes. However, a previous attempt faced public opposition and was ultimately discontinued due to various concerns.

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