Employment Requirements for Criminal Justice Professionals
The student will:
A. Assess the impact of personal health practices and behaviors of criminal justice professionals. (Criminal Justice I Standard 10.1)
B. Examine physical fitness requirements for criminal justice career occupations. (Criminal Justice I Standard 10.2)
Introduction – Context
The objective of this unit is to provide students with information and an appreciation of positive physical and mental health practices that lead to successful careers in the criminal justice field. Criminal Justice professionals and specifically police officers have many times been portrayed in the media as out of shape individuals that feast on fast food and donuts. This unit will introduce students to the physical and mental challenges that officers train for prior to becoming a certified police officer. Prospective police officers are trained in a variety of military-like methods while in one of Tennessee’s law enforcement training academies. Upon completion of a POST certified police academy successful police officers continue to maintain a level of physical fitness to deal with the physical and mental challenges of police work. Police officers are exposed to physical and mental challenges daily. Many officers become desensitized to anger, violence and death. Students will be further exposed to positive mental health practices that can lead to a successful criminal justice career. Students will be exposed to statistical data showing the alcoholism, drug addiction and suicide rates of police officers and how these maladies are related to clinical depression and post traumatic stress disorder. Students will be further exposed to Critical Incident Stress Debriefing and other Employee Assistance Programs currently in place to combat these workplace dilemmas. (UG-A, B)
The student will:
A. Explain the impact of personal health practices and behaviors of criminal justice professionals. (UG-A)
B. Explain physical fitness requirements for criminal justice career occupations. (UG-B)
The Instructor will:
A. Provide information on and demonstrations to students on the impact of personal health practices and behaviors of criminal justice professionals. (UG-A)
B. Provide information on and demonstrations of physical fitness requirements for criminal justice career occupations. (UG-B)
C. Provide technology opportunities such PowerPoint, WebQuest, Video and student led internet research. (UG-A, B)
D. Provide illustrations, demonstrations, structured group activities and roundtable discussions on positive physical and mental health practices of successful criminal justice professionals. (UG-B, C)
Materials and Media:
A. Multimedia presentations such as videos and videostreaming for viewing examples of stereotypical police behaviors as opposed to appropriate physical and mental health practices.
B. PowerPoint for presenting visual examples of healthy lifestyle practices.
C. Internet for research and WebQuest of physical requirements for various criminal justice professions.
D. Textbooks (classroom set) to enhance lecture and corroborate information provide in instructor led activities.
A. Essential Questions discussion (UG-A, B)
B. Teacher Observation of discussion, class activity and group activity participation. (UG-A, B)
C. Weekly quizzes (UG-A)
D. 6 week test (UG-A, B)
Goal: The student will examine physical fitness requirements for criminal justice career occupations. (Criminal Justice I Standard 10.2)
Examine physical fitness requirements for criminal justice career occupations. (Criminal Justice I Standard 10.2)
A. Certified police officers must complete a police academy recognized by Tennessee Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) Commission.
B. POST approved police academies require that cadet officers pass physical fitness testing as a requirement for graduation.
As you will recall, we have explored the different areas of law enforcement. We have discussed the different policing agencies in the United States the differences between Federal, State and Local Jurisdictions. What does jurisdiction mean? Correct it is a geographic region or area where a police agency or court has authority. Today we are going to begin exploring training requirements for police officers in Tennessee. Over the next several days we will examine the physical fitness and other requirements for an officer to become commissioned in Tennessee. Most police officers in Tennessee are required to complete a basic police school at one of Tennessee’s Law Enforcement Training Academies. Many larger agencies such as Metro Police Department, Knoxville Police Department and Tennessee Highway Patrol have chosen to operate their own police training academies. Most officers, as we have seen do not work for large agencies. What size agencies do most officers work for? Correct; approximately 90% of police officers work for agencies with fewer than fifty officers. The majority of agencies in Tennessee utilize Tennessee Law Enforcement Training Academy in Donelson to train new police officers. In Tennessee police officers must be complete a police academy within their first year of employment. This is a requirement of the Tennessee Peace Officers Standards and Training (POST) Commission. The POST commission is responsible for ensuring that all police officers in Tennessee meet minimum requirements to serve as a police officer. In Basic Police School cadet officers learn law and the legal system much like we are learning in this class. Officers are also trained in driving skills, defensive tactics, weapon proficiency, and participate in structured Physical Training or PT. In order to graduate from the police academy cadets are required to take and pass a PT test. Cadets unable to pass the PT test will not be allowed to graduate from the academy and will be unable to work as a police officer in Tennessee until they can pass the PT test. Today we will begin to explore some of the physical requirements for police officers to successfully complete the police academy and become certified police officers.
A. By linking to previous discussions of policing agencies and career opportunities in the criminal justice field the students have developed a schema to make educated assumptions of how police officers must adhere to rules and standards. Students have also demonstrated knowledge of how media depictions of police and military training can influence assumptions of how police officers are trained. (Objective A, B)
B. Using an approximately 15 minutes of video demonstrating physical requirements for law enforcement officers, students will be led into a short lecture and a PowerPoint presentation, the students will be exposed to the minimum physical requirements for officers to graduate from Tennessee Law Enforcement Training Academy. (Objective A, B)
4. Strategies for Higher Order Learning:
A. Demonstration Video
B. Seated lecture time
C. Visuals provided by PowerPoint and Streaming Video.
D. Instructor led discussion
5. Practice and/or Review:
Review for this lesson will come in future demonstration regarding physical fitness in law enforcement. The students will be given essential questions and group discussion topics to apply the information given. Internet opportunities will be given to search the State of Tennessee website to further apply the knowledge.
6. Monitor and Adjust:
By listening to student feedback and by observation, adjustments will be made to focus and redirect questions and unclear information.
In the likelihood that students do not understand physical requirements of Tennessee POST Commission, redirection and review will be provided with positive feedback. This standard and objectives will also be revisited and reviewed in future units such as defensive tactics, patrol techniques and officer safety.
8. Materials/Media and their use:
A. Video demonstration to introduce topic.
B. PowerPoint presentation for visual enhancement of fitness terms.
9. Alternative / Supplemental Activities:
A. Printed student copy of fitness requirements, if needed for notes.
B. Additional time to research POST Commission requirements.
C. Printed copy of “Basic Police School Pamphlet” from Tennessee Law Enforcement Training Academy, if needed for review.
A. Teacher observation of student feedback and interest. (Objective A, B)
B. Weekly Quiz over content. (Objective A, B)
A. Tables are arranged in grouped row seating
B. Video Presentation System
C. PowerPoint and presentation system
D. Access to student computers if necessary
Can you see now through this brief introduction that a Law Enforcement Training Academy can be a challenging experience? Would an officer want to show up at the first day of basic police school out of shape? What would he or she be risking? Tomorrow we will begin a more in depth exploration of physical fitness and decide how nutrition can help with physical training. Later in the week we will continue to explore how physical and mental training can prepare the officer for survival on the streets.