Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Class 06 Parents Orientation


   On Tuesday -5-July the Bogota Emergency Service Youth Academy held the first of two Parent Orientation meeting for the Students who have been accepted into Class 06 for this Summer.  The second will be held on Thursday 7-July at the Kennedy Emergency Service Building  located at 69 W. Main St. in Bogota , NJ.  The meeting will start at 7:00p and is mandatory in order to allow a Student to be apart of Class 06.
   The meeting was started by Bogota Police Captain James Sepp who talked about the dedication of Program Director Sgt Craig Lynch , and Coordinator Anna Geraghty had given the Academy. He also told of his belief in the Academy was so strong that he was also there as a Parent who is proud to have a second Child accepted into the Academy. He then turn the meeting over to Sgt Lynch and “ Miss Anna”. Sgt Lynch began by thanking the Parents for allowing their Students to become a member of Class 06. He said the main mission of the Academy is the safety of the Cadets. He talked about the Academy record of holding a spotless record in their first five Classes. Ms. Geraghty  then told the parents that she is a registered nurse who also specialize in special needs Student, and is confident in her abilities to handle the needs of the Cadets during their time at the Academy.
   Next Sgt Lynch explained how this Academy is different then most others in the area. First is the fact that the Academy accepts a limited number of Students. This allows for better interaction of the Cadets with the instructors and other specialist  that they will learn from during a duty day. The limited number of Cadet also serves to motivate the Cadets as to the reasons for attending the Academy. If a Cadet would like to withdraw, for any reason,  the Academy will agree to it respectfully. Sgt Lynch then said there is a long waiting list  of eager Student to take the open space.  Of the close to 300 Cadet  that have been apart of the Youth Academy only 4 have dropped out. In the event of any cadet wishing to leave the Academy the fee will be returned to the Parents, but all Academy equipment must be returned. The next part of the meeting was to discuss the type of experience the Cadet will have. The Academy is based on a Military style program. However it will not be a “ Boot Camp” type of atmosphere , All of the instructor have Military, or Police backgrounds and will talk to the Cadets in a  direct , but forceful manner. The Instructors mission is to encourage a Cadet to push themselves beyond what they think they can do, and acknowledge their progress in the Academy. All instructors are under the guidelines of being respectful of the Cadets at all times. However any instructor is allowed to “ adjust” a Cadet when necessary as long as it is done as a learning situation, and never for punishment. Both Sgt Lynch and Miss Anna  let the Parents know that there are Female staff members at the Academy to ensure the safety and comfort of all Female Cadets.
  Ms Geraghty then  gave the schedule for the Academy's Class 06. The Cadets will have a assessment day on Thursday 28-July. The first full duty days begin with Orientation on Friday 29-July. She said that a typical duty day would be like. The day starts at 7:30 and goes to 4:00p  with the most intense day being Orientation on the first Friday. Then each day will follow the same schedule, except for the last Friday 5-August when the Cadets will have a morning session then be sent home for an extended break. The Cadets will then report for duty later in the that afternoon for their " Black Friday" duty. She advised the Parent to check with the Academy's web site for any changes or updates. She continued saying that the job of the Parents is to be as supportive of their Cadets as possible especially after orientation. This is the day were the Instructors try and make the Cadets stop being Children and start to become members of the Academy.  After this day a Parents job is to assist the Cadets  to relax and become ready for the full Academy experience for the next seven day. Another job of the Parents is plan for Graduation on Tuesday 9-August. This will take place at Steen School and it is suggested that it is made  a special event for the Graduating Cadets. During the duty time at the Academy the Cadets will attended classes in heath, life-skills, along with other instruction for personal growth.   There will also be physical and drill training to assists the  Cadets with team building. On other  duty days the Cadets will experience hands on training  with the members of Bogota's Emergency Service.  Sgt Lynch stressed that the Cadets will preform the duties in which they learning about. Cadets will cut open a car with the jaws of life, Operate a fire hose under pressure, and  even recover objects in the pool while scuba diving. Sgt Lynch talk about how the Bogota Youth Academy is the only one in New Jersey to allow their Cadet to experience  Scuba diving by donning all the equipment needed and being taught with certified instructors. Sgt Lynch added that part of the mission of the Academy is to have the Cadets learn by doing, not just watching.  So any activity the Cadets participate in will be a hands on experience. 
   Then there was time for the Parents to ask question and talk to a few of the instructors privately.
   Also on Tuesday the Academy received a donation for the Bogota Educational Association as BEA representatives Vicki Sheppard and Laura Ketchum presented Sgt. Lynch a check with funds donated by Teachers of the Bogota Public Schools. Bogota Blog NJ also presented a check to Anna Geraghty as part of the Academy's Sponsor a Cadet program.  For more information,  about the  Bogota  Emergency Services Youth Academy please visit their website at :  or by email at

Parents looking at the type of uniforms the Cadet will wear.

Vicki Sheppard (L) with Laura Kethcum presenting a donation check to Sgt Lynch.
photo courtesy of Craig Lynch
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