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Army July 19, 2012
Getting the word out
IT WAS the beginning of a new
era for the Defence Force School
of Languages (DFSL) when com-
mand responsibilities were trans-
ferred from Army to VCDF Group
on July 1.
The transfer is a key milestone
among several major changes initiated
by the 2009 Defence White Paper to
manage language skills as a capability
in their own right.
More than 250 staff and students
attended the formal handover ceremony
at RAAF Base Williams on June 29.
The ceremony reflected the
change in command from the Defence
Command Support Training Centre
(DCSTC), under the leadership of Col
Christopher Rule, to the Australian
Command and Staff College (ACSC),
under the leadership of Cdre Richard
CO DFSL Lt-Col Giles Gorman has
been with the school since 2009. He
said being managed by VCDF Group
meant the school was now more strate-
"The VCDF Group employs the
most language trained personnel and
now also manages the training system,"
"While we are a Defence train-
ing establishment, we apply as much
education as we do training, so there
is a natural place for us within the
Australian Defence College from an
education, training and leadership per-
Defence rethought and rewrote the
standards of language training and
the management of Defence linguists
under the recommendations of the 2009
Lt-Col Gorman said one thing that
had remained constant was the out-
standing reputation of the school to
deliver language training to Defence.
"This reputation is based on our
dedicated staff who are entirely com-
mitted to achieving the best outcomes
for their students, the high qual-
ity of our training packages, which
are becoming more tailored for the
Defence workplace, and our highly
motivated students, who take every
opportunity to learn and develop their
language skills," he said.
Col Rule said the organisational and
functional changes at the school were
made to adapt to a dynamic environ-
ment of changing operational for the
ADF's international commitments.
"The transition to VCDF Group is
the right organisational change for the
ADF," he said.
"The organisation is in good shape
and well prepared to continue its role
in the VCDF Group."
Future projects at Laverton include
the expansion of the main facility to
incorporate an extra six classrooms.
Regional training centres will also be
established in Darwin, Townsville and
Brisbane, which will mean permanent
classrooms in the brigades.
The school has adopted a lan-
which means the language courses
are now focused on the military work-
Lt-Col Gorman said the content
and structure of the courses reflected
what the students actually needed to
be successful in the workplace.
"This is a great benefit for the stu-
dents as they are better prepared for
the operational and strategic environ-
ments," he said.
A student training computer
network will also be established as
the school moves away from being
a paper-based training institution.
Trainees will now be issued with lap-
tops to download their course mate-
rial.Cdre Menhinick said he knew
change was always difficult and chal-
"We are looking at becoming a cen-
tre of excellence in joint education and
training and are committed to helping
the staff at the DFSL in providing the
best we can to the students for when
they represent Australia diplomatically
and on operations," he said.
A new command means new opportunities for
the ADF's internationally renowned languages
school, Cpl Mark Doran reports.
Col Christopher Rule
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