The Metro Police Training Academy, which first opened its doors in 2008, celebrates its 10th anniversary this year.
After receiving full accreditation under the Local Government Sector Training Authority in 2010 and the Safety and Security SETA in 2011, the academy delivered the first batch of new traffic officer graduates in 2012.
Other notable milestones included becoming the first municipality in 2016 to successfully apply and receive accreditation to deliver basic firearm training, which enabled the academy’s instructors to independently train officers in basic firearm competency.
In 2017, a satellite training venue was opened in Lakeside along with a night school programme for law enforcement volunteers and staff employed through the Expanded Public Works Programme.
This year, the academy received full accreditation for the new Basic Traffic Officer qualification which is a three-year course.
“Our training academy is instrumental in ensuring that the staff we deploy are up to the task. It’s also had to accommodate a growing need for training as the various departments increase their numbers through permanent appointments, but also thanks to its complement of volunteers and contract staff,” said the City’s mayoral committee member for safety and security; and social services, JP Smith.
Since 2012, the training academy has conducted 50 youth camps with 2 058 pupils from 93 schools across the metropole. Forty new cadets are recruited annually for the three-year curriculum.
In March, a cadet exit strategy initiative was launched whereby cadets participate in an 18-month programme focusing on peace officer and traffic warden training, first aid and general workplace skills. There is also a practical work component that will include deployment with the Law Enforcement Department’s Neighbourhood Safety Teams, assisting as coaches for the Youth Cadet Programme, and working with instructors to implement the physical fitness base line assessment within the City’s Safety and Security Directorate.