Greensboro police set to start ‘Community Classroom Educational Series’

GREENSBORO, N.C. -- Starting next week, Greensboro police will start a new series of informational sessions, answering questions from the community and giving insight on various aspects of policing through the "Community Classroom Educational Series."

"If I'm pulled over what am I supposed to do?" said community engagement manager Jenny Caviness, explaining the different topics officers will address in the classes.

"Why is force used?” she said. “When is it used? And, what is the expectation?"

Once a month, officers will hold one-hour classes on different current issues like officer training and decision making, according to Caviness.

"The topics that we picked are definitely relevant to what you're seeing in the media and what people have questions about," Caviness said.

Caviness says the department first started the program in the fall, holding three classes which all filled up quickly.

"The classes filled up within 48 hours," Caviness said. "There were a lot of questions nationally and locally about why officers make the decisions that they make."

After lots of requests and emails from community members, the department put the program together which will cover a total of 10 topics.

The first class will be held on March 29.

"There was a laundry list of items that people wanted to learn about so it takes a while to really start creating programming to meet that need," Caviness said.

Sgt. Brad Johnson will lead four of the classes.

"Internet safety for teens, teen dating violence,” Johnson said.

Johnson says his classes will also try to answer many of the questions parents ask him every day.

"I would consistently get phone calls from the public, 'Hey, something happened with my child online,’" Johnson said.

Caviness says along with teaching and taking questions, she says the overall goal is to better relationships between police and the people they serve.

"We're trying to meet some of that community need," she said.

Most of the classes will be held at the department training’s facility at 1510 N. Church St. in Greensboro.