Field Training Officers (FTO)
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Field Training Officers (FTO)
There are Police Officers who are specially trained to instruct new Police Officers. They are known as Field Training Officers, or FTO's. To become an FTO, experienced Foster City Police Officers, who have shown exceptional leadership qualities, are selected to attend Field Training Officer School, where they learn to be instructors in the FTO Program.
The FTO program is 16 weeks long (about 640 hours) for Entry-Level Officers and can be as few as eight weeks (320) hours for Lateral-Entry Officers.

All new Foster City Police Recruits, whether entry level or lateral entry from another department, are required to go through, and successfully pass, our Field Training Program. The main purpose of the program is to ensure that new Police Officers understand how to apply what they were taught in the Basic Police Academy and to ensure they understand and comply with Foster City policies and procedures. As new officers graduate from the Basic Police Academy, they are placed under the supervision of an FTO. The recruits are assigned to the Patrol Division while they complete the Field Training Program. Trainee's work with several different FTO's, on various patrol shifts, giving them as much exposure to police work as possible. During this phase, they receive instruction in:

  • Patrol Operations
  • Traffic investigations
  • Dispatch
  • Property Processing
  • Evidence Collection
  • Crime Scene Investigations
  • Arrest Procedures
  • Narcotics
  • And much more

New officers are constantly supervised and evaluated during each step of the FTO Program. At the end of each training phase, the new officer's performance is scrutinized. After completing over 640 hours of Field Training, the new officer can be released on his/her own if their FTO's feel that the trainee is adequately prepared and has demonstrated the basic skills needed to perform successfully in the field. A review board tests the knowledge of the new officer prior to release as a solo beat officer. The FTO Program is the important first step each new officer goes through to prepare him / her for a rewarding career.

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City Hall - 610 Foster City Blvd.
Foster City, CA 94404
(650) 286-3200