Bouncers to beat campus crimewave

15th March 1996 at 00:00
Inner-city colleges are hiring guards to stop drug-pushers, vandals and trouble-makers entering campuses and clean up the image of post-school education.

The latest to adopt the tactics - first taken up by the community colleges of Chicago in the 1970s - is South Birmingham College. Seven staff, who dress and operate more like nightclub bouncers than security guards, check every car entering the Hall Green site.

South Birmingham excluded 40 students last year. But the principal Alan Birks said: "We have 18,000 students, so 40 exclusions isn't a very big percentage. "

Others who have taken radical action include Sheffield. Guards were recruited after computer thieves made off with Pounds 100,000 worth of computer equipment.

South Birmingham has so far been free of very serious incidents, said Mr Birks. "But this is an inner-city college where students have a different approach to life from posh middle-class students.

"As the college has grown it's become a more attractive place for criminal elements like drugs pushers. We want to keep out everybody except bona fide students and staff."

The guards have been welcomed by students. Business studies student Victoria Fielding, 29, said: "I used to dread coming to the college.

"I told my friends not to come here and was ashamed to admit that I did. But now I love it."

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number


The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now