FCPD Launches Largest Academy Class in Years

FCPD Launches Largest Academy Class in Years

During a time when police staffing levels and applications for police officer candidates are at historical lows across the country, the Fairfax County Police Department is offering up to $15,000 signing bonus incentivizing a record number of applications.

This week, Chief Kevin Davis welcomed 56 candidates starting their first day at the FCPD Academy. Session 84 is the largest academy class in almost 10 years.

With the hiring challenges facing police departments across the nation, FCPD conducted an overhaul of its recruiting and retention programs by streamlining the recruiting process without changing their hiring standards to ensure they attract the best candidates.

For sworn officers, FCPD implemented a retention action plan that addresses morale, motivation, and preferences to retain sworn workforce. They also developed a program consisting of professional strength and conditioning coaches, nutritionists, physical therapists, and others to provide officers with health and wellness training through the academy and throughout their careers.

Of the 56 new recruits in this class, 14 are women (25%), with an overall department representation of 29.7% women.

The FCPD Academy lasts 25 weeks and includes basic instruction in the procedures, techniques, and principles of law enforcement, incident report writing, criminal law, traffic enforcement and First Aid. All officers also receive implicit and generational bias training designed to help officers build trust and positive relationships within their communities.