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Pennsylvania Code



203.51.    Basic police training course curriculum.
203.52.    Mandatory in-service training courses.
203.53.    Nonmandatory in-service training courses.
203.54.    Commission cheating policy.

§ 203.51. Basic police training course curriculum.

 (a)  The Commission will set the number of hours required in the basic police training course. The Commission will publish a notice in the Pennsylvania Bulletin and in the Commission newsletter whenever the number of hours required in the basic police training course changes.

 (b)  The Commission reserves the right to determine the course content of each area as needed. The basic police training course curriculum shall include instruction in at least the following areas:

   (1)  Pennsylvania criminal law.

   (2)  Pennsylvania Rules of Criminal Procedure.

   (3)  Pennsylvania Vehicle Code.

   (4)  Antisocial behavior.

   (5)  Professional relations.

   (6)  Physical conditioning.

   (7)  Human relations skills.

   (8)  Application of force.

   (9)  Firearms training.

   (10)  Patrol procedures and operations.

   (11)  Investigations.

   (12)  Communications.

   (13)  Handling violent and dangerous people.

   (14)  Custody.

   (15)  First aid and CPR.

   (16)  Operation of patrol vehicle.

   (17)  Other subjects the Commission deems necessary.

Notes of Decisions

   Course Curriculum

   Through Waterways Conservation Officers (WCOs) are authorized by statute to stop and arrest for any violation of law classified as a felony or misdemeanor, WCOs may not conduct stops for violations of the Motor Vehicle Code unless they have completed the entire course of instruction specified in this section. Commonwealth v. Himes, 715 A.2d 1208 (Pa. Super. 1998); vacated and remanded 750 A.2d 304 (Pa. 2000).

§ 203.52. Mandatory in-service training courses.

 (a)  Mandatory in-service training is required of all police officers.

 (b)  Mandatory in-service training shall consist of continuous in-service requirements and academic in-service requirements.

   (1)  Continuous in-service requirements shall consist of the following:

     (i)   Annual qualification on a police firearms course with any firearms, shotguns, or rifles authorized for use, including personal weapons carried in lieu of issued weapons or as a second weapon. A weapon may not be carried on duty for which an officer is not qualified.

     (ii)   Maintenance of a first aid and CPR certification issued by the American Red Cross, the American Heart Association, the Department of Health or other agency approved by the Department of Health.

   (2)  Academic in-service requirements shall consist of at least 12 hours of annual training as determined yearly by the Commission. The Commission will publish a notice in the Pennsylvania Bulletin and in the Commission newsletter regarding the course content and specific hours.

 (c)  Mandatory in-service administration shall consist of the following:

   (1)  An applicant for instructor in the mandatory in-service training program shall meet the requirements of §  203.72(b) (relating to certification requirements).

   (2)  Each school shall submit a training calendar to the Commission prior to the beginning of each quarter of the calendar year. Included in the calendar shall be: course title, dates of training, time of classes and location.

   (3)  Maximum class size for mandatory in-service courses shall be established by the Commission and based on course content.

   (4)  Mandatory in-service training courses are subject to inspection by a Commission inspector.

     (i)   Certification of instructors may be withdrawn after notice and an opportunity to be heard under Subchapter G (relating to notice and hearings), for one or more of the following reasons:

       (A)   Failing to present the full program.

       (B)   Teaching improper or incorrect material or not presenting the Commission program.

       (C)   Cheating.

       (D)   Inadequate preparation for class.

       (E)   Being intoxicated in class.

       (F)   Using inappropriate language.

     (ii)   Withdrawal of mandatory in-service instructor certification by a Commission inspector shall be reviewed by the Commission and the instructor’s certification may be subject to revocation by the Commission under §  203.73 (relating to revocation of instructor certification).

     (iii)   Classes may be suspended immediately during an inspection by a Commission inspector for cause. Costs for classes suspended during an inspection for cause will not be paid by the Commission.

   (5)  Acceptance into classes for which reimbursement is to be requested from the Commission shall be limited to currently employed police officers and county detectives. A fee may not be charged to these individuals for any program paid for by the Commission.

   (6)  Only examinations provided by the Commission shall be used to determine successful completion of academic requirements for these courses. Minimum passing scores shall be determined by the Commission for each examination. The Commission will publish a notice in the Pennsylvania Bulletin and in the Commission newsletter whenever the minimum passing scores required in the basic training course changes.

   (7)  An individual failing to pass the examination to be administered at the end of a course shall be given the opportunity for reexamination by the course instructor. The reexamination process shall consist of a review of course objectives, content and course summary, prior to an orally administered reexamination utilizing a different examination from the failed examination. If an individual fails the reexamination, a written notice of failure shall immediately be sent by certified mail, return receipt requested, to the employing municipality. An individual failing both the examination, and the reexamination for a course, shall be permitted to participate in another offering of the course, if the individual continues to be a currently employed police officer.

   (8)  The certified school, and the course instructors, will be held responsible by the Commission for proper administration of in-service training courses, including maintenance of proper examination security.

   (9)  Newly certified police officers may not be required to participate in the mandatory in-service training courses in the year they were certified.

   (10)  Municipalities may request extensions of time from the Commission for officers unable to complete in-service training enumerated within the time frame. The request shall be filed with the Commission and include justification for the extension.

Cross References

   This section cited in 37 Pa. Code §  203.13 (relating to certification as a municipal police officer); and 37 Pa. Code §  203.73 (relating to revocation of instructor certification).

§ 203.53. Nonmandatory in-service training courses.

 (a)  A political subdivision of the Commonwealth may apply for in-service training grants for the actual expenses of providing nonmandatory in-service training programs to police officers. A political subdivision may apply for a nonmandatory in-service training grant by filing an application and resolution with the Commission.

   (1)  A copy of the application and resolution may be obtained from the Commission.

   (2)  The Commission will only consider requests for nonmandatory in-service training grants that comply with the following:

     (i)   All sections of the application shall be completed.

     (ii)   The application shall be accompanied by a certified copy of the resolution. The resolution shall be adopted by the governing body and shall provide that the political subdivision will adhere to the standards for training established by the Commission while receiving any Commonwealth funds under the act and this subchapter.

   (3)  Applications and resolutions shall be filed with the Commission and received at least 45 days prior to the commencement of the proposed training program. The Commission, or its Executive Director, has the discretion to waive the 45-day filing limitation for good cause, but only if the grant request was submitted prior to the commencement of the proposed training program.

 (b)  Limitations for funding of nonmandatory in-service training programs are as follows:

   (1)  Only courses approved by the Commission will be eligible for nonmandatory in-service training grants.

     (i)   The Commission has the discretion to approve or disapprove any proposed course, based upon law enforcement requirements.

     (ii)   Approved courses will be published in the Commission newsletter.

   (2)  Courses with less than 12 or more than 40 police officers enrolled will not be approved for nonmandatory in-service training grants. However, at the discretion of the Executive Director or by a majority vote of the In-Service Training Committee (Committee), a different minimum or maximum enrollment may be established for a specific course.

   (3)  Nonmandatory in-service training grant requests will not be approved unless the instructors for the course are approved by the Commission or the Committee.

   (4)  The Commission will not approve nonmandatory in-service training grant requests for the following:

     (i)   Firearms qualification.

     (ii)   Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT type training).

     (iii)   First aid and CPR training.

 (c)  Nonmandatory in-service training grant requests in the amount of $3,000 or less may be approved by the Commission’s Committee. The Committee will be appointed by the Commission chairperson and consist of five Commission members including a designated chairperson of the Committee.

   (1)  The Committee chairperson has the authority to convene a Committee meeting for reviewing grant requests. The Committee may not act on any grant request unless at least three Committee members are present at the meeting.

   (2)  The Committee members will vote to either approve or deny each grant request based on the information presented and the standards established by this chapter. In the case of a tie vote by the Committee, the Commission will make the final determination on the grant request.

   (3)  The Committee chairperson will formally report actions taken by the Committee at the next regularly scheduled Commission meeting.

 (d)  Nonmandatory in-service grant requests in excess of $3,000 may be approved only by the Commission. The In-Service Training Committee will review every request and make a recommendation to the Commission.

   (1)  The chairperson of the Committee will formally report the recommendation of the Committee, including any dissenting or minority statements, to the Commission prior to the Commission’s final decision on the grant request.

   (2)  The Commission members will vote to either approve or deny each grant request based on the Committee’s recommendations, the information presented and the standards established by this chapter.

 (e)  The Executive Director will notify the political subdivision in writing of the Commission’s determination concerning the grant request. Notice will be forwarded to the requesting political subdivision by certified mail, return receipt requested.

§ 203.54. Commission cheating policy.

 (a)  The contents of all examinations are confidential. An individual may not cheat or tamper in any manner with an official examination either conducted or sponsored by the Commission by obtaining, furnishing, accepting, or attempting to obtain, furnish or accept answers or questions to examinations, or portions thereof. Individuals may not copy, photograph or otherwise remove examination contents; nor may they use any misrepresentation or dishonest method while preparing, administering or participating in examinations. Unauthorized possession of a test, examination, quiz or a questions, answers or answer keys relating to a test, examination or quiz shall constitute cheating. An individual violating this section shall be barred from further participation in any Commission-required training and ineligible for certification. Individuals will receive notice and have an opportunity to be heard under Subchapter G (relating to notice and hearings).

 (b)  A written notice of the cheating incident shall immediately be sent to the individual’s employing municipality by the school, with a copy forwarded to the Commission and the individual.

 (c)  Prior to administering a written examination, the instructors shall inform the students taking the examination of the Commission cheating policy.


   The provisions of this §  203.54 amended under 53 Pa.C.S. §  2164(1), (8) and (14).


   The provisions of this §  203.54 amended December 12, 2003, effective December 13, 2003, 33 Pa.B. 6046. Immediately preceding text appears at serial page (223399).

Cross References

   This section cited in 37 Pa. Code §  203.33 (relating to minimum school standards and requirements).

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