LEMONT FURNACE, Pa. — The Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency (PCCD) has awarded two contracts totaling more than a million dollars to the Center for Community and Public Safety (CCPS) at Penn State Fayette, The Eberly Campus to develop courses for about 1,300 constables and 2,500 deputy sheriffs throughout Pennsylvania, it was announced today (Sept. 14).
“The training of constables and deputy sheriffs is one of the core missions of PCCD and is of great importance to Pennsylvania,” said Derin Myers, acting executive director of PCCD. “We are happy to once again partner with Penn State to deliver this necessary training to constables and deputy sheriffs throughout the Commonwealth.”
The contracts announced today are renewals of previous contractual agreements with PCCD, according to Ted A. Mellors, CCPS director, who said the terms are five years for the constable contract and two years for the deputy sheriff contract.
CCPS, which is a first responder-oriented curriculum development and training unit within Penn State Fayette’s Office of Outreach and Continuing Education, has, since 1996, developed comprehensive training curricula for the PCCD constable education program. The center first developed a program for delivery in southwestern Pennsylvania that was later selected for statewide implementation and was recognized as the nation’s best non-credit continuing education program by the Association for Continuing Higher Education.
Mellors said that after working with law enforcement professionals to develop the initial constable curriculum, CCPS later submitted a proposal to deliver the training for these courses. Years later, the center expanded its curriculum development expertise for deputy sheriffs in Pennsylvania. CCPS currently holds a third contract with PCCD to deliver the training to constables from 22 counties of western Pennsylvania. These in-service trainings are held on campus and in locations throughout the western region of the state.
Penn State Fayette Director of Outreach and Continuing Education Joseph Segilia said the Center is part of the campus’ commitment to meet the education and training needs of law enforcement officers. “The Center for Community and Public Safety has been nationally recognized for its program quality and relevance,” he said. “The CCPS team works diligently to become aware of contemporary law enforcement issues. Through their efforts, we hope to help improve the quality of law enforcement throughout the Commonwealth,” said Segilia.
According to Mellors, the upcoming contract for constable education calls for the CCPS to develop an 80-hour initial training program, in addition to a 40-hour introductory firearms course. The center is also required to develop in-service classes that include training in defensive tactics and criminal and civil laws, while others focus on “lessons learned.”
As part of its contractual agreement with PCCD, Mellors said CCPS will share all of its course content with Indiana University of Pennsylvania and Temple University, both of which provide in-service training for constables in the central and eastern parts of the state, respectively.
Also, the CCPS announced that it recently renewed a separate contract with the PCCD for an Act 114 deputy sheriff curriculum. This agreement requires the center to develop a 19-week academy curriculum for all new deputies.
The academy will consist of 30 classes taken over 760 hours. The CCPS will develop basic and advanced supervisory training, “train-the-trainer” courses, in-service continuing education classes, and online merit classes for both sheriffs and deputy sheriffs.
Mellors is pleased by the successful bids for contract renewals. He was instrumental in founding the center in 1987 as an emergency medical services education program.
In addition to the constable and deputy sheriff programs, CCPS also serves as an accredited provider of CPR, first aid, AED, advanced cardiac life support, and pediatric advanced life support training, and is accredited by the Pennsylvania Department of Health as an EMS Training Institute approved to provide first responder, EMT, paramedic, and other associated training courses. The Center recently underwent a site visit as part of the process to become a nationally accredited paramedic program provider by the Committee on Accreditation of Educational Programs for the Emergency Medical Service Professions.
Also, CCPS has written curricula for the U.S. Department of Defense and has held contracts with the National Institute of Justice. The staff consists of six full-time and four part-time workers, as well as about 20 subject matter experts who develop courses.
Mellors is “extremely proud” of his staff and the center’s work over nearly three decades. “We are actually influencing law enforcement and public safety in all four corners of the commonwealth — and beyond,” he said.