Advertising concerns underline school TV debate
A public debate is brewing over a Toronto District School Board proposal that could result in advertisements being shown on giant television screens at city schools.
It's believed that the monitors, which would be installed in hallways at schools, would display school bulletins and other information. But there is concern in some quarters that the screens would also be used for advertisements in a captive environment.
The plan would result in a company installing screens at 70 schools. Other content, like photos from school events and student work would also be shown on the digital screens.
The proposal was to go before a school committee Wednesday night. However, the meeting wrapped up before the issue could be addressed. The discussion has been deferred until the next meeting, set for five weeks from now.
Still, any implementation of the program cannot occur until it is discussed and approved by the TDSB.
A year ago, a pilot project between the TDSB and Onestop Media Group resulted in screens being placed in the halls of four schools: Harbord Collegiate, Central Technical School, Central Commerce Collegiate and Haydon Park Secondary school.
At the time, school board brass said that potential advertising content would be under strict guidelines, meaning fast food ads would likely be rejected.
It's expected the school board could see some revenue from the plan.
Last year, Chris Bolton, then-vice-chair of the TDSB, said in a press release: "Today's youth are tech savvy. This project engages them through their own media environment but also challenges them to be involved in their school and community."
Learning has become more relevant using the technology and is reflective of their interests and those of their community, which also shares the benefits of this new communication piece in the Toronto District School Board."
With a report from CTV Toronto's Natalie Johnson