Royal Australian Army Educational Corps
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The Royal Australian Army Educational Corps (RAAEC) is a specialist corps within the Australian Army. Formed in 1949, the corps had its genesis in other services that existed within the Australian forces during World War I and World War II. It is currently made up entirely of commissioned officers and the corps is responsible for the provision of education-related services within the Army. Its various roles include instruction, designing computer-based learning materials, training development, administration, language training, and command, leadership and management.
The RAAEC was established in September 1949 as the Australian Army Educational Corps, and was granted Royal assent in 1960.〔Dennis et al 1995, p. 513.〕 Consisting of the Crown and a boomerang upon which the corps' initials are inscribed superimposed over a "fluted flambeau of flames", the current RAAEC corps badge was adopted in 1964.〔Jobson 2009, p. 140.〕 It is the only corps badge in the Australian Army where the crown does not appear at the top, and is based on the badge devised for the Royal Army Educational Corps by King George VI in 1949.
The corps grew out of the Australian Army Education Service (AAES), which was established on 29 October 1943 during World War II,〔 under the command of Colonel Robert Madgwick. Through the AAES, the corps draws its lineage from the Australian Army Education Scheme which was established under Madgwick on 5 March 1941.〔Long 1963, p. 84.〕 That scheme itself was based loosely upon a vocational education scheme that had been established during World War I within the Australian Imperial Force in 1918 under George Merrick Long as part of the demobilisation and repatriation process.〔
Throughout its history, the corps has deployed members to support Australian forces deployed on operations. Initially, they deployed to Japan as part of the British Commonwealth Occupation Force, where they provided education support for service personnel and their children.〔Directorate of Army Education 1990, p. 99.〕 Later, members of the corps were sent to Korea during the Korean War where they were attached at battalion level to provide soldiers with training in the field. During the Vietnam War, RAAEC personnel were deployed to support the 1st Australian Task Force at Nui Dat.〔〔Directorate of Army Education 1990, p. 121.〕
Throughout its history also, the corps has provided short and long-term courses to enlisted soldiers. Short-term courses have been developed internally by education staff while some long-term courses were accredited with external authorities. In Australia during the 1960s and 1970s, many education courses were provided to soldiers as one requirement for promotion to a higher rank. In the then Territory of Papua New Guinea also during this same period, Australian National Servicemen in the education corps provided courses in literacy, numeracy and citizenship to non-commissioned ranks at various army barracks.〔 The role of conscripted education corps staff in Papua New Guinea has been published in ''Chalkies: Conscript Teachers in PNG'' (National Library of Australia ID 3084181) ''Armi Wantoks'' (National Library of Australia ID 3377828) and at www.NashosPNG.com〕
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