Rock County explorer post program changes kids and instructor’s lives

Behind the Badge

ROCK COUNTY, Ill. (WTVO) — The Rock County Sheriff’s Office Police Explorer Post program launched a little more than a year ago to help get kids more interested in the career of law enforcement.

Sergeant Andrew Reed has been there from the very beginning.

“It’s a great program. It’s a ton of fun,” Reed said.

Explorers don’t spend their whole day in the classroom. They also have to go through intense simulations.

I’ll tell you it’s completely different training kids than it is training adults…but it gives me appreciation for what I get to do,” Reed said. “When you see someone up-and-coming really have the drive to be in law-enforcement it kind of rejuvenates what I get to do everyday.”

If an Explorer ultimately decides not to pursue a career in law enforcement, there’s still more for them to learn.

“Use of force, traffic laws, handcuffing, arrests, squad car use, deadly force situations. Everything that we get in the academy is what we try to teach them,” Reed said.

It’s said that the Explorers aren’t the only ones who walk away with a rewarding experience.

“The number one thing that I learned when I became a supervisor is I really love teaching. I love teaching what I’ve known,” Reed said. “Teaching kids its definitely given me more patience, more appreciation for the job that I get to do.”

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