Maryland Department Turns to CPAT

The county's new executive told the fire chief he wants to replace the county's current $1,500 test for the more intensive $25,000 one.

The memo also said the test would need to be validated for use here - meaning someone would have to determine if the exam actually tests whether a recruit can perform the essential functions of the job.

"It is unlikely that the county can validate CPAT for future use," the memo said.

County Auditor Teresa Sutherland noted in her report that women failed the CPAT more than men. Of the 63 recruits who took the CPAT and entered the academy, only four were women. Of the 100 recruits who have taken the Cooper Test, 19 were women.

Bob Stevens, president of the local fire union, praised Mr. Leopold's new push for the test and said it's working fine in other departments.

"It's a proven tool nationwide that allows us to make sure that the people coming into the department know exactly what they are getting into before even starting the academy," Mr. Stevens said, noting that the New York Fire Department is now using the test. "Obviously we are very excited."

Republished with permission of The Capital.