Sioux Falls Public Safety Citizen's Academy
What is it?
The Citizens’ Academy is a ten-week program designed to provide Sioux Falls residents first-hand information about how the Sioux Falls public safety system works, and what role each department plays in keeping Sioux Falls safe. It is an educational and informative program that allows citizens the opportunity to learn about the issues that impact law enforcement efforts in the city of Sioux Falls.
Participation in the Academy requires a commitment of one night a week for the ten-week period. Classes are held on Thursday evenings from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. The classes are held at the Sioux Falls Law Enforcement Center Training Room, 320 West Fourth Street.
What is the purpose of the Academy?
The Academy is designed to increase understanding between citizens, Metro Communications, and the Police through education. One of the goals of the Citizens’ Academy is to acquaint citizens with each agency’s role in the criminal justice system and help the residents of Sioux Falls to better understand how the organizations work in their community.
Community-oriented policing plays an important role in reducing crime in any community. The Citizens’ Academy was instituted to improve the communication between citizens and government organizations and allows us to obtain citizen input and support throughout the city. This increased understanding and communication will allow us to work as a community in identifying problems and finding solutions to issues that are impacting our city.
Who teaches the Academy sessions?
The instructors who teach the Academy classes are officers and personnel from the Police Department as well as operators from Metro Communications. The instructors teach in their own area of expertise in which they have had years of training and experience in. These individuals are able to bring “street” experience into the classroom.
What subjects are included?
The Citizens’ Academy will include detailed information on such topics as patrol, special operations, criminal investigations, and community policing efforts. There will be demonstrations by the S.W.A.T. and K-9 units as well as bomb squad equipment and drug displays.
In one session, members will be given an overview of the department’s firearm policy, familiarization of the firearm, and an opportunity to shoot the firearm at our shooting range.
Metro Communication operators will explain their function and how the 911 Call Center works. Students will spend some time in the communications center observing how it works.
Members will also have the opportunity to do a ride-along with a patrol officer on one of the patrol shifts. This will allow the members to see first hand what officers respond to on any given day.