Some things just don’t go away, they hang around like an unwelcome guest, or the after effects of Brussel Sprout Soup.
This last week or 10 days, whatever it is, has seen Direct Entry and Graduate Recruitment take centre stage.
The WORST argument (in my opinion of course) in favour of Direct Entry Inspectors and Superintendents comes from the College of Policing themselves.
— College of Policing (@CollegeofPolice) December 16, 2015
Never mind he arguments for or against, the main issue that completely stunned me was the apparent disregard by the author of the effects on suitably qualified Police Officers awaiting potential promotion from within, in the traditional manner;
Another frequent question I am asked is ‘will the Direct Entry at inspectors and superintendents be taking promotion opportunities from serving officers?’
I come back to my earlier point that the police service needs to be the strongest it can be with the best person for each role being fairly and correctly selected.
The numbers of Direct Entry officers that are entering the service are extremely small compared with the numbers in the rank or aspiring to the rank.
We are well aware there are thousands of fully qualified and talented officers awaiting promotion and what we are doing is absolutely not designed to negatively affect their chances.
In other words, there are so few of them, relatively speaking, that they don’t matter.
MY big question would be “If these Direct Entry Insps & Supts possess such desirable qualities why cant we train our own?” An officer awaiting promotion to Inspector or Superintendent has built up a whole wealth of experience along the way. They will have acquired a significant amount of knowledge and assorted skills, yet not the right ones it seems. So why can’t these officers be simply taught these desired skills that they apparently lack?
Or is there a totally different agenda at work at the College?
Moving on, the very same College thinks that all recruits into the Police Service should possess a degree in Policing Skills.
Under the proposals, new police applicants would need to complete either a degree in practical policing or a conversion course after graduating in another subject.
Dr Sam Peach, who has put together the plan for the college, said: “The majority of other professions have graduate entry in the UK.
“There’s a lack of parity with other professions and because of that the police is not recognised as a legitimate profession.
“We are looking to have degree-level qualifications for constable and masters for superintendent.”
Why would 100% of recruits in the future require a degree? I fully accept that Policing has become complex over the years, but I never once felt that I was missing out, inadequate or incompetent in any way because Ai didn’t have one.
Let me say here and now that I have absolutely no problem with Cops With Degrees, my issue is entirely with the perceived need for 100% Graduate Cops, and not just any old degree either.
Would we be having this conversation if ACPO hadn’t ‘dumbed down’ recruitment over the years?
What effect will this policy have on the Home Secretary’s edict to increase Ethnic Minority Officers in the PolicecService. Surely recruitment of ALL Ethnic Origins will FALL?
Does anybody think that this policy will INCREASE the numbers of recruits of ANY. Race, Gender, Sexuality or Religion etc?
If establishment numbers mysteriously rise more than normal during the pilot study I will happily shut up and never mention it again, but I truly don’t see how it will.
I have also heard it mentioned that Police Officers without a degree, addressing an audience predominantly of graduates, may feel inadequate and awkward. In my experience if you know what you’re talking about and are comfortable with your subject this should not be an issue for the majority.
Can we cope with fewer, better educated officers? I doubt it, some scenarios just need numbers, pure and simple. If a PSU full of graduates turns up at a riot, wil the rioters pack up and go home in the face of that particular opposition? Maybe, time will tell.
What do the College intend to do with the tens of thousands of officers across the ranks that don’t have a degree? UPP abounds. The Federation will be busy, assuming that they have their degrees.
Existing officers will be encouraged – but not required – to improve their qualifications to degree level.
There is definitely a place in Policing for Officers with degrees, particularly on promotion. However, I seriously question the need for 100% Graduate Profession. I remain to be convinced, but for those of you who may think that I am ridiculing our current crop of Graduates in somecway, I most definitely am not, nor do I defend the alleged use of Bag Carrying comparisons. I didn’t see it, nor did I use it, but I do still have the right to hold and express an opinion, I do not have to fall in line and agree with Dr Peach and other proponents of the scheme.
Job for life? Vocation? The only job I’ll ever have/want? Or just a 5 year ‘tick box’ posting. Cut back on training costs, cut back even more on pensions. Oh Cruella WILL be pleased.