Sign up for ETPA's April 3 Basic Peace Officer Class under way
Faith Huffman | News-Telegram News Editor

Feb. 13, 2006 - Sign up is currently under way for the next night police academy course offered in Sulphur Springs through East Texas Police Academy of Kilgore College.

Applications for the basic peace officer certification course should be returned to Kilgore no later that the first day of class. However, the sooner the packets are attained, the sooner the comprehensive application process can be completed. In addition to the standard paperwork, applications will also have to complete a physical examination, under go a psychological exam and drug screening. Applicants are responsible for the cost of all exams and expenses associated with the application and class.

The course begins April 3, with classes held from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Thursday nights. The location for the class will be announced at a later date, as the location will vary from its usual location through about April 27, as the upcoming class overlaps with the current class who will still be utilizing the room for instruction.

On at least three occasions, the upcoming academy course will require participants to attend weekend sessions: one weekend for a 32 hour driving course at the main academy campus; one weekend for the 40 hour day and night weapons training at the firing range; and at last one Saturday morning designated for training in OC spraying.

Tuition for the basic peace officer course is $800 plus the cost of their textbook and other needed materials. The tuition can be paid up front or paid in four installments of $200 according to a set block schedule. Also, the Ark-Tex Council of Governments will also pick up a portion of the fee for some enrollees.

Those enrolling in the 640 hour police academy must have either a high school diploma or a GED and 12 hours college credit. Applicants must also provide proof of education as well as "certified documents reflecting that the applicant has never been on court-ordered community supervision or probation for any criminal offense above the grade of a Class B misdemeanor of a Class B misdemeanor within the last 10 years from the date of the court order; not currently under indictment for any criminal offense; not been convicted of an offense above the grade of a Class B misdemeanor or a Class B misdemeanor within the last ten years; never been convicted of any family violence offense; is not prohibited by state or federal law from operating a motor vehicle or possessing firearms or ammunition; and proof of U.S. citizenship."

The upcoming class will also have a few criteria changes, most notably a physical requirement. There will be some physical fitness training involved to help better prepare academy graduates for agency testing when they begin applying for positions as peace officers following successful completion of the course.

"A lot of agencies require applicants to be able to run 1-2 miles in 13 to 15 minutes. Over the six month course we will get them running so they will be able to do that Several of the Metroplex and other agencies and academies require it. We will designate about 30 minutes at the start of class for physical training, running.

The class will be taught primarily by members of Hopkins County Sheriff's Office who are licensed, certified instructors.

Application packets for the basic peace officer class may also be attained by calling ETPA, 903-983-8663; at the school, Woodruff Adult Education Center, 220 N. Henderson Blvd. in Kilgore; or from ETPA's web site:

For more information or questions about the basic peace officer certification course contact East Texas Police Academy in Kilgore at 903-983-8663 or local academy instructor Andy Chester at work at HCSO, 903-438-4045. 

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