Greater St. Louis County Fire Academy
Curriculum
Below is a list of classes covered during the recruit-training program:

  • Orientation (8 hours): after completing this lesson, the student will be able to describe basic fire department organizational structure and
operating procedures and distinguish among the duties and functions of fire department personnel.

  • Firefighter Safety (13 hours): after completing this lesson, the student will be able to follow basic fire station, apparatus, and tool safety
procedures and guidelines.

  • Fire Behavior (6.5 hours): after completing this lesson, the student will be able to predict probable fire behaviors and know the actions necessary
to change or prevent these behaviors.

  • Building Construction (6.5 hours): after completing this lesson, the student will be able to identify structural characteristics of building
construction types and recognize signs and causes of potential building collapse.

  • Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus (SCBA) (19 hours): after completing this lesson, the student will be able to recognize toxic atmospheres,
don and doff protection clothing, use a PASS device, and safely use, clean, refill, inspect, and store SCBA.











  • Arson Detection (6.5 hours): after completing this lesson, the student will be able to identify his or her responsibilities in fire cause
determination and protect evidence of fire cause and origin.

  • Ropes & Knots (16 hours): after completing this lesson, the student will be able to identify and properly knot, use, and maintain various types of
ropes used in the fire service.

  • Fire Apparatus (4 hours): covers operating, positioning, types, construction, and use of fire apparatus for firefighting and water supplies.

  • Fire Hose (24 hours): after completing this lesson, the student will be able to identify and use hose couplings, tools, and appliances and will be
able to load and roll hose.  The student will also be able to make hydrant connections from various lays, and will be able to carry, drag, advance,
and handle.










  • Auto Extrication (16 hours): this class deals with subject matter of light rescue using hand-operated hydraulic tools and hands-on using heavy
    power tools. Junk cars are used for training.















  • Electrical Emergencies (4 hours): covers electrical hazards associated with dealing with high voltage wires and how to deal with emergency
situations associated with the first responder.  This class is instructed by AmerenUE.

  • Water Supply (3 hours): after completing this lesson, the student will be able to describe the fundamentals of a water supply system, measure
hydrant flow pressure, and connect a fire department pumper to various water sources.

  • Fire Streams (15 hours): after completing this lesson, the student will be able to explain water and foam streams.  The student will also be able
to identify and operate a given selection of nozzles and tips, and assemble and operate a foam fire stream system.


















  • Forcible Entry (13) hours: after completing this lesson, the student will be able to identify and know appropriate applications and maintenance
procedures for forcible entry tools.

  • Loss Control (6.5 hours): after completing this lesson, the student will be able to safely and efficiently perform salvage and overhaul at a fire
scene while protecting evidence for fire cause.

  • Ladders (23 hours): after completing this lesson, the student will be able to identify, carry, raise, climb, inspect, and maintain fire service ground ladders.















  • Ground Cover Fires (8 hours): class matter deals with wildland firefighting.  Goes into
depth on firefighting, topography, weather, size-up, and tactics and strategy to protect
wildland areas.



  • Fire Control (4 hours): after completing this class, the student will be able to operate as part of a team to control and/or extinguish interior and
exterior Class A, C, and D fires and passenger vehicle and wildland fires.

  • Prevention & I.D. (6.5 hours): after completing this lesson, the student will be above to identify residential fire hazards, conduct a fire station
tour and a residential fire safety survey, and make and document a fire and life safety presentation.

  • E.M.S. (3 hours): minimum emergency medical care performance capabilities to include infection control, CPR, bleeding control, and shock management.

  • Diversity in the Fire Service (4 hours)

  • Ventilation (10) hours: after completing this lesson, the student will be able to apply the principles of ventilation to appropriately ventilate a building.












  • Public Fire Education (6.5 hours): consists of planning and implementing fire prevention campaigns.  Explains how to target age groups and
work with the media to control fires before they happen.

  • Report Writing (4 hours): after completing this class, the student should be familiar with the procedure of filing an incident report and the
importance of obtaining accurate and complete information.

  • Critical Incident Stress (3 hours)

  • Auto Fires (6.5 hours):  NFPA states that vehicle fires are one of the most common fires within the United States.  With the advent of
airbags, side impact protection, hybrids, and other alternative fueled vehicles, these "common" fires have become anything but routine.  
Fire recruits learn both basic and advanced skills to mitigate these common, yet highly hazardous and potentially deadly events.  Skills such
as forcible entry, hose and nozzle streams, and fire control are reinforced while students learn to safely extinguish a passenger vehicle fire
emergency using live fire training.












  • Emergency Control of Natural Gas/Natural Gas burn (8 hours): studies the hazards of natural gas, explosive ranges, and properties of same.  
Also explores the dos and don'ts of dealing with natural gas.  Focuses on firefighting duties of first-in engine company to a scene.  Consists of
four hours in classroom and four hours live fire training.

  • Sprinklers (4 hours): after completing this lesson, the student will be able to perform basic operations at properties protected by automatic sprinklers.












  • Alarms & Communications (4 hours): after completing this lesson, the student will be able to identify and properly use various fire service
    communications systems and equipment.

  • Extinguishers (8 hours): after completing this lesson, the student will be able to identify and use portable fire extinguishers to extinguish small
Class A, Class B, and Class C fires.

  • Flammable Liquids (8 hours): This class deals with the chemistry of foam for fire suppression. Topics include: concentrated foams, mixing,
eductors, limitations, understanding fog nozzles, aspirating nozzles, and foam tubes.  Includes hands-on live fire training field exercise.









  • Liquified Propane Gas (8 hours): focuses on useful handling of hazardous materials incidents involving flammable gases.  Students will learn
about tank construction, properties of liquid propane gas, proper tactics for dealing with liquid propane gas, and will receive live fire training
with liquid propane gas on site.















  • Hazardous Materials Awareness & Operations (27 hours): recognition and identification of hazardous materials, labeling, placarding, scene
control, and use of D.O.T. Response book.

  • Search & Rescue (24 hours): after completing this lesson, the student will be able to safely use various rescue and extrication tools, and conduct
a search and rescue in a structure operating as a member of a team.












  • High Rise (8 hours): covers construction, fireground management, tactical considerations, elevators, life safety, ventilation, and water supply.

  • Structure burns (16 hours): live fire training evolutions.  Class incorporates all skills taught for firefighting: suppression, safety, rescue, ICS,
hose handling, PPV, water supply, etc.

  • Fire Ground Survival (16 hours): the purpose of the Fire Ground Survival program is to ensure that training for Mayday prevention operations
are consistent between all firefighters, company officers and chief officers.  Firefighters must be training to perform potentially life-saving
actions if they become lost, disoriented, injured, low on air or trapped.  These training exercises must be consistent throughout the fire service.

  • Incident Command (4 hours): this class combines command strategy with organizational procedures and is designed to be used for structural
firefighting incidents using up to 25 companies.  It is also used for other types of emergency incidents.

  • NIMS (4 hours): National Incident Management System class: ICS 100, 200 & 700.

  • Everyone Goes Home (3 hours):  Firefighters must have the courage to face a multitude of risks in order to save lives and protect their
communities.  Their courage allows them to willingly risk their own lives so that others can be saved.  A different type of courage is required to
stay safe in potentially dangerous situations, avoiding needless risks and tragic consequences.  This provocative and moving presentation is
designed to change the culture of accepting the loss of firefighters as a normal occurrence.  Building on the untold story of LODD survivors, it
reveals how family members must live with the consequences of a firefighter death and provides a focus on the need for firefighters and officers
to change fundamental attitudes and behaviors in order to prevent line of duty deaths.  The central theme promotes the courage to do the right
thing in order to protect yourself and other firefighters and ensure that "Everyone Goes Home" at the end of the day.
The City of St. Louis Fire Department graciously donates their time and the use of their ladder truck for our recruit ladder training.  
The St. Louis County Fire Academy greatly appreciates the help the City has given us throughout the years.  Many thanks to Chief
Jenkerson, Captain Conley, Captain Neighbors, and all our City friends!
(Photos by:  Firefighter Jennifer Swatek - 81st Recruit Class)
(Photos by:  Firefighter Jennifer Swatek - 81st Recruit Class)
(Photos by:  Firefighter Jennifer Swatek - 81st Recruit Class)
(Photos by:  Firefighter Jennifer Swatek - 81st Recruit Class)
(Photos by:  Firefighter Jennifer Swatek - 81st Recruit Class)