The Brush Farm Corrective Services Academy, which provides training and education to the state’s prison and parole officers, is celebrating 30 years.
The facility in Eastwood, in Sydney’s north, opened in 1990 to improve the recruitment and training of correctional officers, and has so far seen close to 12,000 recruits go through its doors.
Commissioner Peter Severin said Brush Farm also attracted international attendees and was recognised as a world-class academy.
“Rehabilitating and interacting with offenders is not for everyone, however correctional staff play a vital role in the justice system, so we must ensure they have the best possible support and development,” Mr Severin said.
“Brush Farm Academy provides the world’s finest operational correctional training – both theory and scenario-based – where officers can gain nationally-recognised qualifications.
“Over the years we’ve welcomed people from all backgrounds and ages, helping to build our diverse workforce.”
Academy Director Josh Sampson says their training staff make a valuable contribution to the development of the organisation and its culture.
“Our experienced trainers, who themselves are officers, share their expertise and innovation to guide our new recruits and educate existing staff to advance their skills and qualifications,” Mr Sampson said.
“Our courses attract interstate and international delegates, and are designed to improve staff capability and confidence while helping officers expand their skill sets to successfully perform their roles.”
New correctional officer recruits participate in 10 weeks of training in areas including legislation, inmate management, security, weapons and officer survival skills. This is followed by nine months of on-the-job training and ongoing development and mentoring. On completion, they receive a Certificate III in Correctional Practice.
Community Corrections trainees complete eight weeks of training and a four-week placement at one of 60 offices. Further on-the-job training is provided over nine months resulting in a Certificate IV in Correctional Practice.