The program aims to prepare students for careers in local law enforcement or in fire fighting and emergency medical services.
TOLEDO, Ohio – Toledo Public Schools TPS has a new program aimed at preparing students for careers in local law enforcement or fire fighting and emergency medical services.
The three-year program is called PS 419. The PS stands for public schools and public safety. It was developed in collaboration with Owens Community College, Toledo Fire and Rescue and the Toledo Police Department.
The program begins with an exploratory course for students during their sophomore year. In grades 11 and 12, the focus is on both the police and the fire brigade.
Second semester seniors can enroll as students at Owens Community College for criminal justice or their basic EMT certification.
“We’re going to have one-on-one police and fire service for our students starting in year two so that they have someone who is already working in the field and can guide and advise them,” said Tom Dimitrew, senior director of career technology at TPS . “Most importantly, when you finish the program as a student, it can take you to the next step.”
Dimitrew hopes that by the end of the course the students will make a decision about which direction to go.
In the case of fire fighting, they can take a test with the city and start a career at the age of 18.
In the case of police work, students can enroll at Owens Community College for additional criminal justice credit until they are 21 and are eligible to apply for careers at TPD.
“If you have one or 100, you have to be the right person. I think this system is well set up to ensure the young man or woman is identified early on and help them get around, both academically and professionally to help you.” to be successful, “said Michael Pfahl, dean of the School of Business, Information and Public Service at Owens Community College.
The program also focuses on ensuring that students work for, know their way around, and care for the community they grew up in. This is especially important for TPD while there is currently a shortage of sworn officials.
For a city of Toledo’s size and crime rate, Chief George Kral has said he would like to see up to 720 officers in the force, but they only had 602 sworn officers going through 2021.
They will soon have 627 officers who number the 25 cadets in their academy.
The public safety program begins in the fall, and TPS continues to enroll in the course through the summer. Students interested in enrolling can speak to or visit their school advisor TPS.org.