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Commission on Crime and Delinquency’s Sheriff and Deputy Sheriff Education and Training Program Celebrates 40 Years and 2024 Basic Training Academy Graduates

05/20/2024

Harrisburg, PA - This year marks the 40th anniversary of the inception of the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency’s (PCCD) Sheriff and Deputy Sheriff Education and Training Program which has resulted in enhanced training and education to improve public safety across the Commonwealth. Last week, 35 individuals graduated the 2024 Basic Training Academy, bringing the total number of basic training graduates to 3,890 since the program began in 1984.

“Our Sheriff and Deputy Sheriff Education and Training Program is a great example of our work to make Pennsylvania communities safer,” said PCCD Executive Director Mike Pennington. “By providing training and skill-building to the sheriffs and deputy sheriffs across our Commonwealth, we are preparing them for real-life experiences, while ensuring their duties are carried out in a responsible and equitable fashion. Congrats to the 2024 Basic Training Academy graduates and thank you for your service to the people of Pennsylvania.”

In accordance with 44 Pa.C.S. Chapter 74, the Sheriff and Deputy Sheriff Education and Training Program provides free certification and re-certification for approximately 2,100 active sheriffs and deputy sheriffs across the Commonwealth. The law requires that newly hired deputy sheriffs attend basic training in order to be certified and sheriffs must be certified within their first term. In addition, all sheriffs and deputies are required to renew their certification through biennial continuing education.

"The Basic Training Academy provided professional training, and the curriculum blended classroom instruction and practical application exercises to reinforce our knowledge and skills,” said Justin Pratt, Deputy Sheriff for Montgomery County and member of the 2024 Basic Training Academy graduating class. “We were challenged mentally and physically, and often taken out of our comfort zones. I am confident in my knowledge and abilities obtained through the Academy to better serve my community.”

Since 1984, the Sheriff and Deputy Sheriff Education and Training Program has overseen 96 Basic Training Classes for sheriffs and deputy sheriffs which contains courses including but not limited to civil law and procedure, crimes and offenses, criminal procedure, use of force, cultural diversity, ethics, firearms, defensive tactics, crisis management, role of the first responder, and tactical first aid.

The Sheriff and Deputy Sheriff Education and Training Board (SDSETB), under PCCD, oversees the development and delivery of certification and re-certification training provided by the Sheriff and Deputy Sheriff Education and Training Program. The SDSETB strives to stay current with the changing needs of the Commonwealth’s sheriffs as well as their role in the criminal justice system. In 2020, to keep up with the latest technology, the SDSETB revised and updated its curriculum to provide web-based trainings to better meet the needs of the sheriffs and deputy sheriffs, which also resulted in a cost reduction for the program.

Additionally, to enhance the professionalism and educational opportunities of Pennsylvania’s sheriffs and deputy sheriffs, the SDSETB worked with Pennsylvania State University (PSU) to award 16.5 credits towards a degree at PSU or transferable to other educational institutions following the completion of basic trainings.

To learn more about the SDSETB or the Sheriff and Deputy Sheriff Education and Training Program, visit the PCCD website.


MEDIA CONTACT: Ali Gantz - algantz@pa.gov


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