Degrees and Certifications:
Mr. Mark Kostos
Law Enforcement Instructor
Mr. Mark Kostos is the originator of the newest program at Lewis & Clark, arriving prior to the 2021-2022 school year. Mr. Kostos has extensive experience in the law enforcement field. Originally from San Diego, California, he joined the United States Marine Corps out of high school, ultimately rising to the rank of Gunnery Sergeant. During his nearly 14 years of active duty, he worked in military intelligence, specializing in the Korean peninsula.
After a special duty assignment with the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, Mr. Kostos chose to leave the Marine Corps and enter law enforcement. He first served as a Border Patrol Agent in the Rio Grande Valley in Texas; and later as a police officer in the city of Irving, Texas. The events of 9/11 spurred him to join the Federal Air Marshal Service (FAMS) where he served for a number of years as an in-flight security officer. Subsequently, he supervised the training section for the FAMS Chicago Field Office, and ran one of the Visible Intermodal Prevention and Response Teams. His most recent assignment was as the Assistant Federal Security Director for Law Enforcement with the Department of Homeland Security/Transportation Security Administration at St. Louis - Lambert International Airport.
Mr. Kostos is married and has two adult children, and two grandchildren. When not at Lewis & Clark, Mr. Kostos enjoys spending time with his family, hunting, fishing, and golf. He also cheers on the Chicago Cubs. (But please don’t hold that against him!)
President Theodore Roosevelt said, “To educate a person in the mind but not in morals is to educate a menace to society.” My goal at Lewis & Clark is to provide my students with the ethical, physical, technical, and tactical skills needed to put them on the path to becoming the next generation of great law enforcement professionals.
The following video is from our friends at Northland Career Center in Platte City. They have graciously allowed us to upload their video to show potential students in St Charles what the program could be like at Lewis & Clark. Thank you Northland Career Center and instructor Officer Bruns!
1 or 2 year program; 3 credits per year
The Law Enforcement program is a one year program with an optional second year that focuses on the core principles of criminal justice, the basic knowledge, skills, and standards taught at Missouri Peace Officers Standards and Training Program (POST) Certified Police Academies, and the curriculum from Missouri’s Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE). Professionalism, character, and integrity are embedded into this program and serve as a foundation for every participant. In addition, the program includes a strong emphasis on communication (verbal, non-verbal, and written) and teamwork.
This course will include many opportunities for students to connect classroom experiences through practical application. Students will be involved with investigation techniques, law enforcement procedures and protocols, and courtroom etiquette.
Students will be taught the materials and skills using a variety of teaching and learning methods. They will have daily lessons or learning activities where students will be expected to actively participate. Some examples include: class discussions, lectures and slide presentations, practical skill demonstrations, drills and exercise, physical training sessions, team building activities and “role play” scenarios. Students will be required to complete various assessments, worksheets, written assignments, oral presentations, practical exams, group/team projects, and physical training tests.
This program will be foundationally built on principles of character and leadership development. As such, student professionalism, participation and behavior will be assessed and included in the student’s overall grade at between 25%-35% of the total grade. Students will have an opportunity to earn class professionalism points each day for professionalism. Examples of being professional include: being on time, wearing a clean neat uniform, listening and following instructions, actively participating in class, and using professional language.
Physical training is a part of the Law Enforcement curriculum. Students should be able to: perform basic physical exercises and be generally physically fit; tolerate the loud sounds associated with law enforcement, such as sirens, bangs and yelling/vocalizations; climb, lift, bend and handle taxing physical activity; tolerate an environment including high places, small spaces, extreme temperatures, and dirty environments. A physical examination by a medical professional (such as a family physician) will be required for students enrolling in the law enforcement program. More specific information will be provided during the summer.Uniform Policy
Uniforms will be worn on “professional dress days” determined by the instructor. The uniform will consist of a Uniform shirt (TBD but neat/non-wrinkled), black pants, black boots, & black belt. Shirt must be tucked into pants. Hair should be pulled back off the collar/shoulder. Exposed jewelry is prohibited except for small stud earrings on women. Also, no visible tattoos allowed. On physical training days, uniforms will consist of black shorts and required (TBD) t-shirt plus athletic shoes.
Essential Skills Needed For Success in Law Enforcement
Students enrolling in the Law Enforcement program will learn the necessary skills to prepare for post secondary education and the general work environment of law enforcement careers. Successful students understand that this program will require working hard towards mastering the following core essential skills:
- Work under stress; ability to control temper and regulate emotions in stressful situations, reliance; strong coping skills
- Tell when something is wrong or likely to go wrong
- Service oriented; desire to serve community
- Attention to detail
- Communicate information effectively with peers and instructor
- Comfortable public speaking
- Strong report writing and reading skills; independent note-taking skills
- Able to perform basic physical exercises and is generally physically fit
- Able to tolerate the loud sounds associated with law enforcement, such as sirens, bangs, and yelling/vocalizations
- Able to climb, lift, ben and handle taxing physical activity
- Able to tolerate a law enforcement environment including high places, small spaces, extreme temperatures, and dirty environments
Credit and Certifications Offered
Students will receive 3 credits of high school credit per year.
Students can obtain certifications in:
- Missouri Law Enforcement Skills and Knowledge (MOLESK) Certification
- International Academies of Emergency Dispatch Emergency Telecommunicator Certification
Dual Credit: TBD. Options include: St Charles Community College, St. Louis Community College, SEMO, Missouri State, Hannibal-LaGrange, UCM
- U.S. Court System & Constitutional Law
- Criminal Law and Procedures
- Legal Responsibilities and Ethics
- Basic Police Concepts and Procedures
- Technical Knowledge & Skill
- Basic Police Equipment
- Career Planning & Management
- History of Criminal Justice
- Problem Solving & Critical Thinking
Students in the Law Enforcement program will have the opportunity to join SkillsUSA, the Lewis & Clark CTSO (Career & Technical Student Organization). SkillsUSA activities develop positive attitudes, build self-esteem and empower students to excel. They give students a head start in developing valuable professional skills such as communications, interpersonal abilities, time management, teamwork and more. Because SkillsUSA works hand-in-hand with business and industry, students get the skills employers want.
All students at Lewis & Clark learn the SkillsUSA Framework as a part of the curriculum in each program. The SkillsUSA Framework has three components: Workplace skills, Technical Skills Grounded in Academics, and Personal Skills. They illustrate how students fulfill the mission of the organization “to empower members to become world-class workers, leaders, and responsible American citizens.