The Brentwood Police Department Field Training and Evaluation Program, under the direction of Lieutenant Jim Colvin, is designed to provide individual instruction to police officer trainees by trained and experienced officers called Field Training Officers (FTO’s). The goal of the program is to expose the trainee to a wide range of law enforcement duties and develop the knowledge and skills of the trainee to ensure that he/she is ready to perform to the high standards of the Brentwood Police Department.
After graduation from the Tennessee Law Enforcement Training Academy, which provides ten weeks of state mandated training, recruit officers are assigned to the FTO Program. Trainees with no prior experience are assigned to the program for no less than 20 weeks while those with prior experience may be placed in an accelerated program of no less than 12 weeks. While in the FTO Program recruit officers are assigned to a number of different FTO’s. They are additionally assigned to each of the divisions within the department providing valuable experience in day to day operations.
The program is based on the San Jose model of field training where trainees are evaluated daily on a series of tasks including critical performance, frequent performance, knowledge, attitude, relationships and appearance. The program is divided into three phases of ascending responsibility and concludes with the Solo Beat Phase which allows the trainee to operate as a solo officer while being evaluated by an FTO. After successfully completing the program the recruit officer is required to take a written test, perform a field scenario and appear before the FTO Committee which is made up of FTO’s, the FTO Coordinator and the Captain of Field Operations. Upon graduating from the FTO Program officers are assigned to the Patrol Division and are evaluated bimonthly by a shift supervisor until completing a one year probationary period.
The FTO’s and FTO Coordinator take great pride in the success of the Brentwood Police Department Field Training Program and believe strongly that it is the backbone of creating a quality, well trained police force.