Classes on Personal Safety Safety Education
The Madison Police Department's Safety Education Unit consists of four police officers primarily responsible for teaching Classes on Personal Safety (C.O.P.S.) to 4th and 5th grade students throughout the city's public and private elementary schools. The curriculum was originally developed and is continually updated by the Madison Police Officers assigned to Safety Education in conjunction with teachers from the Madison Metropolitan School District.
The Madison Police Department's Classes on Personal Safety (C.O.P.S.) program provide basic information on the following topics:
- Internet Safety
- Cyber Bullying
- Protective Behaviors
The officers teach in each classroom to which they are assigned for one hour each week for approximately 16 weeks, or one full semester.
Safety Education Officers' presence in the schools is not limited to delivering the C.O.P.S. program. They also assist principals, teachers, and other school staff members as education, prevention, and, occasionally, enforcement needs arise throughout the school district. It is not uncommon for the Safety Education Officers to attend school assemblies or join their students for lunch, recess, or an occasional field trip. You will also find them reading books to kindergarteners and visiting other primary school classrooms to discuss a variety of safety issues and concerns. The Safety Education Unit acts as a liaison between the police department and the MMSD Safety Patrol program.
In addition, Safety Education officers respond to requests from individual community members seeking information on children's safety, and provide support for youth-affiliated organizations such as Boy and Girl Scout Troops, preschools, and educational summer programs, including MSCR's Safety Town.
Currently, Safety Education Officers Rebecca Lindsey, Chad Joswiak, Kelly Hoeft, and Mike McCoy visit most all of the city's 31 elementary schools. They also provide the C.O.P.S. program to 5 private schools, including High Point Christian School, Queen of Peace, St. Maria Goretti, St. James, and St. Dennis Catholic Elementary Schools. Each year, approximately 3,000 4th and 5th grade students in the city of Madison successfully complete our Classes on Personal Safety.