Practical scenarios and an engaging case study were among the items discussed during a police visit to Cramlington Learning Village that highlighted the issue of taking responsibility for your actions.
Local neighbourhood officers were invited to take part in the day-long initiative with groups of pupils. It focused on themes of crime, punishment, arrest and detention and featured a fictional case of a young man who was persuaded by his friends to get into a stolen a car and be driven around in it for a ‘bit of a laugh’.
As a result, he ends up being arrested, charged with an offence, going through a court case and ending up in prison where he fares badly.
The officers also answered the many questions put to them by the students.
Lucy Sutton, from Cramlington Learning Village, said: “Countless staff approached me and said how much they had enjoyed the day as well as the pupils.”
She added that the youngsters had provided “highly engaged and mature responses” and they asked the visiting officers some great questions.
As well as explaining to the students how the sorts of situations mentioned during the day can happen, PC Neil Nevens and his colleagues gave them a realistic idea of what it felt like to be arrested and go through the custody process.
He said: “The scenario was very realistic and brought home to the students how the decisions they make can have a huge impact on them and limit their future choices.
“In this case, if the young man hadn’t felt pressurised by his peers to make a bad decision and get into a stolen car, his life would have turned out quite differently, and much more happily.
“It’s important that students realise the consequences of the choices they make as they get older, as this can affect their whole lives.
“The children were very receptive to our scenario – many of them already knew us because of previous school sessions, which made it easy for the youngsters to talk to us.
“A lot of the students took a keen interest in the role of the police officers as they are interested in a career in the police when they leave school.”