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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What is the process for applying?
Why should I attend the Citizen's Academy for 9-1-1?

What can I expect to learn from the Citizen's Academy for 9-1-1?
Which is better, the classroom or on-line version?
Do I have to do a sit-along observation?
Why is there a class fee and how much is it?
What if I don't want/need the college credit?

What is the process for applying?

1. Fill out an application form for the on-line version or the classroom version. The application is in pdf format and requires Adobe Acrobat to view it.
2. Mail the application to the address indicated on the bottom of the form.
3. The application will be reviewed.
4. If accepted for the on-line version you will be provided with the log in and password for access. If accepted for the classroom version, you will be notified of the next date.

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Why should I attend the Citizen's Academy for 9-1-1?

While it is common for law enforcement agencies to provide Citizens' academies for their communities, an independent 9-1-1 center, like the Santa Cruz Consolidated Emergency Communications Center (SCCECC), is challenged to find a similar forum. An informed and educated public is more cooperative and less suspicious of law enforcement practices because they understand the how's and why's of law enforcement procedures. By establishing our own Citizens' Academy for 9-1-1, the SCCECC is able to reach the community and promote a better understanding of how the 9-1-1 center operates. Our goal, when developing the Citizens' Academy for 9-1-1 , was to realize the same benefit as our law enforcement agencies: an informed and educated public that is more cooperative and less suspicious of the 9-1-1 process.

Anyone with an interest in understanding public safety communications and the 9-1-1 call process should consider participating in this program. Whether you are interested in being prepared to make a 9-1-1 call, a career as a public safety dispatcher or simply curious, there are distinct benefits to attending this class. This e-mail received from a Citizen's Academy for 9-1-1 graduate says it all:

"There were two primary reasons I took the Citizen's Academy for 9-1-1 class on February 7th. One reason was to try to help me deal with my severe nervousness in several situations where I'd had to call 911. Another reason was the indecision I'd experienced on whether or not it was appropriate to call 911 that I'd felt in some other, less stressful situations. Less than a week after taking your class - just after midnight on February 14th - I had to call 911. This time I was much calmer than I'd ever been before calling 911 in and emergency. Your class really helped me. Thanks!"

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What can I expect to learn from the Citizen's Academy for 9-1-1?

There are three main objectives for the Citizens' Academy for 9-1-1, as follows:

  • Citizens' Academy for 9-1-1 participants will have a solid understanding of our organization and how we serve the community.
  • Citizens' Academy for 9-1-1 participants will understand how a 9-1-1 call is processed from, start to finish.
  • Citizens' Academy for 9-1-1 participants will see how our organization uses quality improvement processes to provide the community with the highest level of public safety communications services.

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Which is better, the classroom or on-line version?

The on-line Citizen's Academy for 9-1-1 was developed to increase the availability of the program. Our participants and Academy Staff have indicated that time constraints are the single, biggest limit to participation in the program. The on-line version uses the same instructional technology we use for our CD-ROM-based dispatcher training.

The classroom provides more interaction with participants and opportunities to ask questions. The on-line version provides opportunities for citizens with an interest but have distinct time or travel constraints. Regardless of which version is completed, all applicants are required to complete a four hour sit-along to successfully complete the on-line Citizens' Academy for 9-1-1.

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Do I have to do a sit-along observation?

Yes. The sit-along observation is an integral part of the curriculum. To ensure academy participants have a thorough understanding for 9-1-1 center operations, they must complete a four-hour sit-along in the dispatch center. A certificate of completion is not issued until all requirements of the Citizen's Academy for 9-1-1 have been met.

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Why is there a class fee and how much is it?

All training at SCR911 is affiliated with the South Bay Public Safety Training Consortium (SBPSTC). This affiliation provides a course recognized by the California Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) as well as college credit for training. The fee for this course is currently $13, the equivalent of a half unit. In turn, SBPSTC reimburses SCR911 one dollar per person, per hour of training. This reimbursement goes toward continued professional training for our dispatchers.

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What if I don't want/need the college credit?

Unfortunately, the fee is required of all participants whether attending the classroom or on-line version.

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Contact person:

Support Services Division
SCR 911
495 Upper Park Road
Sanata Cruz, CA 95065
831-471-1006
Fax: 831-471-1010


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Santa Cruz Regional 911
495 Upper Park Rd.
Santa Cruz, CA 95065
(831) 471-1000

Webmaster@SCR911.org
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