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WiFi in schools - is it safe?

(39 Posts)
frankie3 Wed 21-May-08 18:20:43

My Ds's primary school has WiFi with its hub in the centre of the school. I wonder if this is safe for children as I heard that it has been banned for schools in some countries in Europe such as Germany and Scandanavian countries. Does anyone know anything about this?

ReallyTired Wed 21-May-08 18:39:40

Well... I think that most schools have a wireless network. I hate to tell you but in a built up area your kids are probably subjected to radiowaves from cordless phones, your neighbours' wireless networks.

I am not worried about wireless networks and radiation.

I am more concerned that school electrical wiring will not cope with the increase in computers. Its only a matter of time before a school has a fire.

frankie3 Wed 21-May-08 18:49:42

But I just worry that at the school the children are in very close proximity to the wireless hub - it is in the middle of the library, right next to where they eat lunch. Why have other countries banned this if it is safe?

ReallyTired Wed 21-May-08 20:30:58

The wireless switches are no different to ones that a lot of people use at home. Children experience more exposure to radiowaves at home than at school.

frankie3 Thu 22-May-08 18:28:41

But is constant exposure to this at home safe?

cazee Thu 22-May-08 18:55:50

I personally don't think it is safe. It is like phone masts, officially they are declared safe, but a lot of people feel that they are not. I would not have wifi at home, but I don't even use a cordless phone or allow the dentist to x ray my teeth. With radiation it is all about the risk. The higher the level of radiation the greater the chance of a partical hitting the nucleous of a cell and causing damage. For instance dentist x rays are very low radiation, but there are official figures for the numbers of people who get cancer as a result of x rays, as there is always that chance of a nucleous being hit.

Fauve Thu 22-May-08 19:04:17

I am with Cazee on this.

Hulababy Thu 22-May-08 19:06:12

Are there statistics and/or accredited research to back up claims that it is unsafe?

Blandmum Thu 22-May-08 19:06:30


Fauve Thu 22-May-08 19:10:55

Well, there was a report in the Independent last week about mobile phones adversely affecting babies in utero. One of the researchers was very surprised by the results. Haven't got the link, though, sorry.

lljkk Thu 22-May-08 19:11:18

The entire city of Norwich is supposed to be WiFi'd. City council is paying for it(?)

ReallyTired Thu 22-May-08 19:58:26

There is a huge difference between ionising radiation like alpha particles, beta particles, gamma particles and X-rays and radiowaves.

The school I work in has several wireless transmitters. Generally they are in cupboards and out of reach of kids.

Wifi is safer than mobile phones

Still I hate wireless connectivity issues. Wireless is very tempermental and bad for my mental health.

aviatrix Thu 22-May-08 20:01:01

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ReallyTired Thu 22-May-08 20:04:03

aviatrix, I bet your neighbours do! Unless you live in a huge mansion with massive your kids are going to exposed to Wifi.

I used to work for a small primary school where it was possible to pick up SIX different WiFi networks from neighbouring schools.

It also has to be remembered that the sun is a source of a considerable amount of radiation.

Fauve Thu 22-May-08 20:28:03

Cazee and Aviatrix, I'm glad to hear there are other people like me.

I just prefer to be on the safe side.

I also stay in the shade, ReallyTired wink

ReallyTired Thu 22-May-08 21:43:54


"I also stay in the shade, ReallyTired "

That won't stop radiowaves or comic rays from the sun.

I once went to a lecture with a bonkers professsor who was convinced that a bit of background radiation was good for you. hmm

ReallyTired Thu 22-May-08 21:49:45

very wacky article

wildfish Fri 23-May-08 10:15:45

Who knows. But there is always this hysteria about technology and then they are banned with very little evidence. Equally there is very little evidence sounding them safe.

Personally I don't think it is not safe. Wireless is everywhere now. Airports, town centres, homes, neighbours, shopping centres, hotels, work environments. If you check you'll probably find at least 6 networks where you live on all the time, even when you sleep.

The power of these wireless devices is very low compared to mobile phones (check the distances involved). Your microwave pumps out more interference over the same frequencies as these wirelesses.

All I am saying one more wireless hub is really not going to make any difference when you are surrounded by all of it.

branflake81 Fri 23-May-08 10:56:28

I am very surprised how many of you are against this. For a start wireless is everywhere. In my house alone I can get six networks from neighbouring houses, there are phone masts everywhere too - it's part of modern life.

I think you are being a bit precious.

aviatrix Fri 23-May-08 10:58:14

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aviatrix Fri 23-May-08 11:15:04

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RubberDuck Fri 23-May-08 11:19:19

Ben Goldacre's Bad Science explodes the terrible science involved in the wifi in schools hysteria and electrosensitivity nicely, imo.

aviatrix Fri 23-May-08 11:24:49

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frankie3 Fri 23-May-08 16:46:24

There have been studies that say that using mobile phones could be harmful for young children, but this is not publicised when buying phones. Like all these things, it's all about money and economic gains now and not about potential future risks.

We have wifi at home, but I always turn it off at night so that the children do not have constant close exposure to it while sleeping. Just like I would not like them to sleep with a mobile phone next to their head.

aviatrix Fri 23-May-08 17:32:53

Message withdrawn

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