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Training Leaders of Cadets - Intermediate Course

Posted on February 10, 2017 at 12:00 AM by Curt LaFond

The redesigned TLC Basic Course has been available for nearly a year, and now the new 1-day TLC Intermediate Course is also available.
Starting Point.  This posting to the Cadet Blog introduces readers to what’s new with TLC, but if you really want to know about the program, please see the TLC Program Guide & Course Director Handbook, available at
Goals.  TLC Intermediate prepares adults to lead squadron-level cadet programs as a unit commander or DCC who is the local point person for all matters relating to cadets, whereas TLC Basic prepares seniors to contribute to a squadron’s CP staff. A third course, TLC Advanced, will serve wing and region DCPs later this year.
Audience.  TLC Intermediate is built especially as follow-on training for graduates of the new 1-day TLC Basic Course, or as refresher training for graduates of the “old” 2-day TLC program.
Content.  TLC Intermediate has four main blocks of instruction:
1)  Cadets as learners
2)  Positive leadership
3)  Program elements in depth, and
4)  Safe and challenging activities.
Some of the lessons were present in the original TLC course but have been redesigned to take the in-class discussions further than they’ve gone before, thanks to the 3-course system’s overall modular approach.
Three lessons are entirely brand new: Generation Z as Learners, Special Needs Cadets, and Progressive Discipline.
Discussion-Centered Course.  As with the original TLC course, both TLC Basic and TLC Intermediate follow a largely discussion-centered format. Surveys report that that’s what people like best about the program. Through discussions, members of one squadron compare their operations with how people in a neighbor squadron operate, and there’s a cafeteria-like opportunity to choose the good ideas most appealing to you, bring them home, and try them out at your squadron.
Projects & Experiential Learning.  Further, nearly every lesson concludes with a practical project – conducting a simulated feedback meeting, devising accommodations for special needs cadets, resolving delicate matters with parents, and more.
Course Directors. As with TLC Basic, directors of TLC Intermediate are appointed by the wing commander, and the program is overseen by the wing DCP. Recipe-like lesson plans are available for each component of the course. The starting point for course directors is the TLC Program Guide & Course Director Handbook, available at Scheduling. Wings may schedule TLC Basic and TLC Intermediate for a single weekend, on a Saturday and Sunday, respectively, if they wish. Our recommendation though is to conduct them on separate Saturdays a few months apart because that time in the field between sessions can be useful in helping newcomers process what they’ve learned. If you try to absorb all 16 hours of instruction at once, it’ll be a bit much. Regardless, this matter is for local leaders to decide.
Web Modules.  Both TLC Basic and TLC Intermediate contain web-based modules. For TLC Intermediate, there are two lessons, which will take about 45 minutes’ total to complete. By using a blended web / in-class format, we keep the in-class duration reasonable while maximizing the opportunity for discussion.                
For TLC Intermediate, the two web-based lessons are not yet available. We’re releasing the course now in response to popular demand. Members who complete the course without the web modules will receive full credit. In the next couple months, the web modules will become available, and all students from that time forward will be required to complete those modules in addition to the in-class activities to receive course credit.
Final Word.  It’s no secret. To make a squadron (or any youth organization) flourish, you need well-trained adult leaders. We’ve worked hard to make the TLC program an effective, fun, and challenging solution. Questions and comments about the TLC program are always welcome, via the comments section below or to us at Thank you.


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