The successes and positive reputation of Plano Public Safety Communications is due highly in part to our thorough training of all newly hired employees. The intent of the training program is to familiarize new PSC Specialists with roles and responsibilities within the department, while teaching skills necessary to perform the job properly.
Beginning on January 1, 2014, Telecommunicators became licensed through the state of Texas just as the Peace Officers and Jailers are licensed.
In November 2015, the Public Safety Communications Training Academy became the first 9-1-1- Academy accredited through The Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA). CALEA Accreditation strengthens an academy’s accountability through a continuum of standards that clearly define authority, performance, responsibilities, and facilitates an academy’s pursuit of professional excellence.
The Academy has six full-time Training Coordinators: Mark Orona, Sarah Elder, Elise Williams, Jennifer Frantz, Christiaan Romero and Chris Edwards. These coordinators are dedicated to instructing new Specialists and keeping current employees sharp and updated within the ever-changing world of 9-1-1. In addition, the department has a group of 15 Communications Training Officers who guide each new Specialist every step of the way, ensuring they get one-on-one attention and guidance.
Training Coordinator Responsibilities
The Training Coordinators develop and implement training programs for new and existing employees of the PSC department. This includes direction, scheduling, and conducting of classroom and on-the job training. They participate in the development of classes, manuals, lesson plans and other material. Instruction includes continuing education courses and annual in-service training. They monitor work of Communications Training Officers, including written procedures to evaluate work and training requirements for daily evaluations. They make recommendations regarding successful completion of training and retention of trainees.
New Specialists will complete approximately 160 hours of classroom training and a minimum of 140 hours of on-the-job training before being released to answering phone calls. They are also required to pass the TCOLE Telecommunicator Exam. Our department has 100% pass rate on this exam. Each employee received just under 1000 hours of experiential and certification training if fully cross-trained in Police, Fire, and NCIC Operations. Training includes (but certainly not limited to) TCOLE Basic Telecommunicator Course, TCIC/NCIC courses, CPR Training, Emergency Medical Dispatcher certification, Geography Tours, Police and Fire ride-along, as well as additional classroom and console training.