The Northern Virginia Criminal Justice Training Academy is scheduled for an on-site assessment as part of a program to achieve national re-accreditation by verifying it meets professional standards.

As part of the on-site assessment, agency employees, academy member law enforcement agencies, the law enforcement training community and the public are invited to offer comments.


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  Basic Training    November 30, 2015

Basic Training

Session 133 Combined Deputy School begins Monday, June 26, 2015 Basic Law Enforcement School begins Tuesday, July 28, 2015. The last day of class is Friday, December 18, 2015,  followed by graduation ceremonies on Monday, December 22, 2015.



Entry Requirements

The Northern Virginia Criminal Justice Training Academy provides basic training for police officers and deputy sheriffs in compliance with the standards required by the Virginia Department of Criminal Justice Services.  A student is not eligible to attend unless they are already employed by one of our affiliated agencies.  If you are interested in a law enforcement career in Northern Virginia you should contact the recruiting office of one of the agencies listed on our Member Agencies page.

Policies & Procedures

To read the Student Responsibilities, please click here.

Basic Law Enforcement School

The Basic Law Enforcement School is divided into four modules. They are Criminal Investigation, Legal, Patrol, and Skills. Recruits must meet three separate proficiency standards in order to successfully complete the School. First, the recruit must attain a minimum cumulative grade average of seventy percent (70%) in each of the four modules. Second, the recruit must successfully pass all state-mandated objectives/criteria. Third, the recruit must successfully complete all performance-based tests. The final grades for the Criminal Investigation, Legal, Patrol, and Skills modules are based on written examinations. The final grades for all performance-based tests are pass/fail. Major components of performance-based training include First-aid, CPR, defensive tactics, firearms training, and driver training.

Combined Basic Deputy Sheriff School

Students in the Combined Basic Deputy Sheriff School must pass all of the criteria listed above for the Basic Law Enforcement School as well as attaining a passing score (70%) in an additional module on topics related to jail operations, court security and civil process.


State mandated objectives are tested in one of two ways, either by written examination questions or practical performance-based demonstrations of a recruit's knowledge.

Written examinations are administered at regular intervals during the session, along with other written examinations covering specific topics, such as CPR, First Aid, etc. Examination questions are constructed in multiple choice or true/false format. Much of the material tested in written format is also tested in performance-based testing. The recruit must not only have concept knowledge but must be able to demonstrate an ability to put that knowledge into practice.

Written examination objectives are included in the numerical grade average of the recruit. If a recruit incorrectly answers a mandated written objective question, the recruit is re-tested and given up to three additional attempts to correctly answer the question. However, the recruit receives no credit for the correct answer and it does not change the recruit's numerical grade average.

Performance-based objectives are tested by placing the recruit in a simulated, role-play situation based on a written scenario, in which the recruit must perform a desired behavior. Performance-based practicals are graded on a pass/fail basis. If a recruit fails to perform the desired behavior, the recruit is given up to three additional attempts to pass. The first three attempts are conducted at the time of the original exercise. If the recruit does not pass the objective during the original exercise, the recruit is counseled and given remedial training. The final attempt is scheduled at a later time in the academic portion of the Academy.

Performance-based objectives for Firearms Training and Driver's Training are tested in the classroom and at the firearms and driver's training ranges and include both written examination questions and practical performance based testing. The recruit is required to score a minimum of 70% in each component. If a recruit fails to meet minimum standards, the recruit will be scheduled for re-training at a later time. The recruit will receive remedial training and will be given up to three additional attempts to meet minimum standards.

The Basic Training Manager determines remedial training and/or re-testing schedules. Performance based objectives are documented by checklists of the behaviors performed.


Each graduate receives an Academy graduation diploma recognizing attendance and successful completion of either the Basic Law Enforcement or Combined Basic Deputy Sheriff school. In addition, each graduate receives State of Virginia certification recognizing completion of state mandated training for law enforcement officers and deputy sheriffs.


The Director's Award for Academic Excellence is awarded by the Academy Director in recognition of outstanding academic achievement. At the completion of basic training, one graduate from the Combined Basic Deputy Sheriff School and one graduate from the Basic Law Enforcement School will receive this award based on the highest overall academic score.

The Thomas L. Shaw Award is in honor of its namesake, and recognizes his 36 years of service to the Northern Virginia region in the Criminal Justice arena.  More than one half of Mr. Shaw’s service was to the Northern Virginia Criminal Justice Training Academy.  During those years, he was an instructor, supervisor, and the Executive Director of the Academy from 1982 to 2000.  Mr. Shaw's commitment to the preparation of law enforcement professionals was integral to the development and implementation of rigorous training standards in the Commonwealth of Virginia.

At his retirement, Mr. Shaw was named the Executive Director Emeritus.  His entire career was typified by three characteristics - Professionalism, Dedication and Leadership.  The student body selects the individual student they feel best exhibits the potential to meet those standards set by Mr. Shaw.


The Northern Virginia Criminal Justice Training Academy is affiliated with several colleges and universities that offer college credits to graduates of Academy training.  The number of credits that can be awarded vary according to the awarding institution.

  Law Enforcement Oath of Honor 

"On my honor,

I will never betray my badge,

my integrity, my character,

or the public trust.

I will always have the courage

to hold myself and others

accountable for our actions.

I will always uphold the Constitution,

the community,

and the agency I serve,

so help me God."

 Developed by the International Association of Chiefs of PoliceCommittee on Police Ethics – 2000.  Endorsed by the Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police  



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