More time on beat for new police officers

New police recruits are to spend less time in the classroom and more time pounding the streets following an overhaul of training methods.

Probationers will spend an extra two weeks getting hands-on experience on the beat.

Scottish Police College director John Geates said the new regime "exposes probationers to the realities of their actual working environment at an earlier stage".

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The Scottish Police Services Authority (SPSA) said that the 15-week residential course at the Scottish Police College in Fife has been cut to 13 weeks.

Probationers will spend 10 weeks undergoing intensive tuition at the college followed by 15 weeks out on the beat.

During this time, they will attend incidents and take part in training exercises. This will be followed by a further three weeks at the college for fitness and skills tests.

The new regime was introduced after an extensive review.

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