Sarah Johnson is the Professional Development and Leadership lead. The sub committee is still a relatively new committee, but is already looking at a wide range of issues with genuine enthusiasm and desire to want to improve standards and opportunities for our members.
Five key areas affecting police officer training and professional development have been identified as
- NCALT E-Learning
- Qualifications and issues
- IPLDP – issues – pre-entry
This is reflected locally with the 2010 Team beginning to announce there initial thought on the structure of the force, with a view to saving money.
Clearly there are going to be limited promotional opportunities in the coming years for the federated ranks, which will impact on retention of experienced staff. There is already evidence of officers seeking to transfer due to lack of opportunity. Consideration needs to be given to how lateral development can be afforded to all those seeking variety and or the opportunity to obtain the relevant skills for progression within the current and foreseeable constraints.
The National Police Promotions Framework continues in its pilot format and will run until April 2011, and there will be one system for all but it is not yet established when this will be. Gloucestershire is not listed to join the pilot at this time.
Whilst we are slowly hearing that the recruitment tap has been turned back on, with our colleagues in the SDU preparing to receive intakes during the summer months, nationally there are moves a foot to both “professionalise” the police service and require those applying, to have already had a degree of training. This will ultimately lead to officers having to gain a variety of qualifications (ranging from a 16 week college course to a full degree) prior to applying for and becoming a constable, with the need to maintain a portfolio highlighting competence in knowledge and performance throughout your career as a police officer. There are mixed views about these ideas, and who the professional body will be that we register with, but aimed at further cost cutting and savings these will undoubtedly come in! This idea is still within the development phase, as it grows we will provide further information, but what are your initial thoughts?
Locally, discussions have been taking place in relation to the pre-retirement course. It is acknowledged that it is beneficial for officers in terms of giving some financial advice but it is questioned as to whether this can be expanded. Due to many officers needing to seek further employment after their full service many feel they are not suitably equipped to compete in the labor market. Consideration is being given to providing skills such as CV building, interview techniques, sign posting to employers seeking ex-police officer etc. Any views on this would be welcomed so please offer some feedback to any of the sub committee members.