King Schools is now offering its Part 107 remote pilot knowledge test prep course at a discount exclusively for AOPA members.
The offer was announced during EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, where John and Martha King also took part in an AOPA Drone Social panel discussion July 27, and noted that the course designed to prepare students to ace the knowledge test required for a remote pilot certificate with small unmanned aircraft system rating has caught on faster than any in the popular aviation training provider’s history.
“It’s the fastest growing course that we’ve ever had,” said co-founder John King, during the panel discussion. His wife and King Schools co-founder Martha King noted that the growing demand for drone education, including the remote pilot course that leads to certification for commercial sUAS operations, bodes well for general aviation more broadly. She recalled anecdotes about unmanned aviators becoming interested and pursuing ratings in the manned aviation world. “It does encourage them to become manned pilots.”
The Kings were joined on the panel by Ryan Braun, chief operating officer of uAvionix, the California startup making avionics including low-cost Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) equipment for both manned and unmanned aircraft.
“We want to see every aircraft equipped with ADS-B,” Braun said, noting the safety benefits of situational awareness also extend to all concerned, both manned and unmanned aviators as well as controllers.
DARTdrones, another of the growing list of companies offering discounts or exclusive products and services to AOPA members, dispatched instructor Colin Romberger to participate in the panel discussion. He spoke of human factors and crew resource management training that largely parallels more traditional pilot training, and he was preaching to the choir: A show of hands indicated that most of those in attendance were AOPA members with manned-aircraft experience. Romberger noted that is not typical.
“A lot of people that are coming into unmanned aircraft, they look at it initially as just cool technology,” Romberger said.
AOPA Senior Director of UAS programs Kat Swain, who worked with the Kings to add their iconic name to the lineup of drone-specific AOPA member benefits, said the work AOPA continues to do as a member of the FAA Drone Advisory Committee and FAA Unmanned Aircraft Safety Team includes an effort to create a safety culture and best practices in the unmanned world that parallels that of manned aviation, and training is a key part of that.