California Highway Patrol (CHP) Commissioner Warren Stanley on Friday, March 20 announced that the CHP Academy in West Sacramento will be closing its doors for cadet training amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
“While we have been making every effort to keep the cadets safe and healthy during their training these last few weeks, the best, and most responsible decision I can make to protect them is to send them home,” Commissioner Stanley said. “I cannot accept the risk that any one of the cadets or staff becomes ill and then be faced with having to quarantine the entire campus.”
The only time the Academy has interrupted training since it opened for full-time operation in July 1976 was in 1992 during the riots that swept Los Angeles and on several other occasions as the result of state fiscal constraints.
The current class of 79 senior cadets and 98 junior cadets, who remain state employees, will report to work Tuesday, March 24 at a CHP Area office near their home. There, they will perform administrative duties and have the ability to observe law enforcement operations and learn the functions of an Area office, similar to where they will report upon graduation.
The move is temporary. As soon as the pandemic is over, the cadets will resume training where they left off.
“Cadets are critical to the CHP mission,” said Commissioner Stanley. “We need them to fill vacancies created by retiring officers so that we can continue to provide the level of Safety, Service, and Security the public expects.”
The Academy is a completely self-contained 457-acre campus. There are 168 dorm rooms that house the cadets during their 28 weeks of intensive training.
During the closure, the majority of Academy uniformed personnel will be reassigned to Area offices, while kitchen and janitorial staff will remain and thoroughly clean the facility. Other administrative projects and duties deemed mission critical will continue.