How we train Lenexa police officers

How we train Lenexa police officers
Posted on 11/06/2020

Whether they're new to law enforcement or transferring from another agency, Lenexa police officers go through extensive training to prepare them for solo patrol. 

Recruits with no prior law enforcement experience

Pre-academy orientation
2–3 weeks

All recruits start with pre-academy training and orientation instructed by Lenexa officers. This establishes baseline skills to benefit the recruit going into the police academy, including geography of Lenexa, physical conditioning, and basic firearms. Recruits are also issued uniforms and equipment during this time.

Police academy
16 weeks

Next, recruits attend the Johnson County Regional Police Academy, located on the Johnson County Community College campus. Here, they learn about topics including law, defensive tactics, interview skills, emergency vehicle operations, report-writing and firearms. Recruits also participate in many scenario-based exercises with experienced officers acting as role players and instructors grading their handling of the scenarios.

Upon graduation from the Police Academy, the recruit is now a certified Kansas law enforcement officer.

Post-academy training
4–5 weeks

After graduating from the academy, our newly certified officers have in-house training with Lenexa police instructors. Topics include advanced firearms tactics, defensive tactics such as weapon retention, advanced patrol tactics such as active shooter response and orientation to specialized units such as K-9, traffic, dispatch and investigations.

This phase ends with 1-2 days of scenario-based training where all previous training will be put to the test during simulated traffic stops and calls for service involving role players.

Field training program
15 weeks

The final and most advanced phase of training is the Field Training Officer Program (FTO).

Each new officer is paired with a training officer to form a two-person patrol unit. These teams are assigned daily to one of our patrol districts and conduct traffic stops, crash investigations and other calls for service.

During field training, new officers will spend time on all three of our patrol shifts (days, evenings and nights). They receive daily evaluations and feedback to ensure that they are successfully progressing through the FTO program.

New officers aren’t expected to know everything from the start. They’re provided with training and resources to gradually learn the basic role of a Lenexa police officer.

Solo patrol

Upon successful completion of all phases of training and at the recommendation of the FTO supervisor, new officers are released to solo patrol and assigned to one of the patrol shifts.

At this point, the new officer training is over and the officer is expected to handle calls for service and police activities independently.

Of course, we rely on teamwork a lot! Collaboration with shift-mates to problem-solve is something we encourage and practice regularly.

Lateral transfer officers

New hires who are already certified as police officers in another jurisdiction may complete an abbreviated version our training program, depending on the Kansas Law Enforcement Training Center’s (KLETC) determination of the officer’s initial training academy requirements. KLETC makes this determination on a case-by-case basis.

Lateral officers will complete 4-5 weeks of in-house training to learn policies and practices specific to the Lenexa Police Department. They then enter the Field Training Officer Program. Officers who demonstrate required skills and competencies may accelerate through the program more quickly than the typical 15 weeks and be released to solo patrol earlier.

Join our team

We're hiring for both officer and civilian positions. Visit our recruitment website to learn more about careers with the Lenexa Police Department. 

Published November 6, 2020