Peace officers in Texas are licensed and regulated by the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement (TCOLE). TCOLE mandates continued training for all Texas peace officers.
To make this mandate clear to all licensees, the TCOLE Rule requiring Continuing Education was updated during the quarterly TCOLE meeting in September 2018. The Rule now includes the statement: “Individuals licensed as peace officers shall complete the legislatively required continuing education program required under this section beginning in the first complete 24-month unit immediately following the date of licensing.” TCOLE Rule §218.3(n).
The Rules also state that TCOLE “may take disciplinary action against a licensee for failure to complete the appropriate training within a training cycle.” TCOLE Rule §218.3(m). Suspension is an allowable disciplinary action for failure to complete the mandatory CE credits.
What Continued Training is Required?
Under the Texas Occupations Code, officers must complete at least 40 hours of continuing education programs once every 24 months. 22 TOC §1701.351(a).
As part of the required training in every 48-month training cycle, Peace officers must take the curricula developed by the Commission, which includes training on:
- Civil rights, racial sensitivity, and cultural diversity;
- De-escalation and crisis intervention techniques to facilitate interaction with persons with mental impairments; and
- Unless determined by the agency head to be inconsistent with the officer’s assigned duties:
- The recognition and documentation of cases that involve child abuse or neglect, family violence, and sexual assault; and
- Issues concerning sex offender characteristics.
TCOLE Rule §218.3. Supervisors appointed to their first supervisory position must complete the above training within 24 months of their promotion.
The CE requirement is waived for officers who serve on active duty for at least 12 months during the relevant 24-month period.
TCOLE publishes this document on its website, which lists all legislative mandates for licensees. It is noted as a “live” document and subject to change and updates at any time.
Experienced Attorneys Defending Licensed Peace Officers
If your law enforcement license is threatened by failure to comply with legislative mandates or a complaint lodged against you, it is imperative that you take immediate action to protect your license. You need an experienced professional license defense attorney who can defend your rights, license, and livelihood. Our attorneys have the experience and legal knowledge needed to help peace officers take aggressive action to protect their licenses.
The Austin, Houston, and San Antonio law enforcement license defense attorneys at BERTOLINO LLP are proud to serve those who serve and protect Texans.
We are standing by to help Texan law enforcement officers. Thank you for your service to our state. Contact us or call (512) 717-5432 and schedule a case evaluation.