After You've Joined > Your Training
Assuming you filled the forms in correctly, passed all the tests and sailed through your assessment day, you should find on your doormat one day an invitation to join your chosen police force as an officer! Take some time to pat yourself on the back, then ring all your friends and tell them - this is a major achievement, think of all the stages you've had to go through to get to where you are today. As many as 6 out of 7 potential recruits fail to get accepted, so you are definitely in an elite!
The next stage is to start your foundation training. Newly appointed officers are trained under a recently introduced scheme known as the Initial Police Learning & Development Programme, or IPLDP for short.
The IPLDP was developed by the Home Office, with the help of the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO), The National Police Improvement Agency, and other key stakeholders. The principles of the IPLDP, which have been agreed nationally, are that the main responsibility for the training of new officers should rest with forces. Officers will be trained more closely within the communities they will ultimately serve, with less emphasis on long periods of residential training.
About the Initial Police Learning & Development Programme
The main aim of your foundation training is to equip newly appointed constables with knowledge of the law and the qualities of judgement needed to achieve effective operational performance on the street. Constables in their two year probationary period are no longer known as "probationers", but "student officers". Although in the real world everyone still calls them probationers!
Forces now have responsibility for delivering their own probationer training, rather than sending them off to regional Police Training Centres (PTCs) as in the past. This means that depending on what arrangements your force has made, you may be trained at your headquarters, at an external training facility, or even at a University or other similar further education establishment. Your force will advise you of the exact arrangements.
Most training is no longer residential. This is ostensibly to give the recruits more time to study outside of the training environment. Oh, and it happens to cost considerably less if recruits live elsewhere and feed themselves!
The IPLDP Curriculum
The curriculum comprises of 22 modules, which have been divided into four phases. The four phases are:
Phase 1: Induction
Phase 2: Community Safety and Partnership
Phase 3: Supervised Patrol
Phase 4: Independent Patrol
Student Officer Learning and Assessment Portfolio
Each officer is provided by their force with a 'Student Officer Learning and Assessment Portfolio' (SOLAP) which outlines the required learning for new recruits and provides them with somewhere to record their progress through the four learning phases. The SOLAP replaces the much-loathed PDPs (Personal Development Portfolio) previously used by forces, and when completed contains the material necessary to evidence the officer's suitability for the role. Many forces are also requiring their student officers to prepare this evidence to a suitably high standard to allow them to obtain NVQs (Non-Vocational Qualifications) in policing.
Community Engagement is one of the key principles behind IPLDP. The student officer must be able to understand the needs and expectations of the community in which they will work. Students will need to understand the dynamics of their local communities, in addition to current relationships between the community and the police service. Phase 2 of the curriculum will focus on Community Engagement.