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<em>Flight School Business</em>

Vol. 6-Issue 16- 08/09/2016




FAA restores birthday solos

The FAA has once again made it possible for student pilots to solo on their fourteenth or sixteenth birthday. The change follows a request from AOPA after new application rules implemented in April required that pilots in training couldn’t apply for a student pilot certificate until the first day of eligibility—the fourteenth birthday for gliders or balloons, and the sixteenth birthday for all other aircraft. As of July 26, students can submit a paper application up to 90 days before their eligible birthday. Read more >>

Instructor studies student pilots, predicts solo

After studying student pilots for more than 50 years, CFI John Dougherty says he can predict when most are ready to solo. What’s the magic number? Dougherty says most pilots are competent to control an aircraft on their own after 55 takeoffs and landings. That’s based on the average number of takeoffs and landings across a diverse cross-section of pilots and ability levels. Read more >>

Huerta: FAA will finalize third class medical rule

The FAA will move quickly to implement third class medical reform, streamline aircraft certification standards, and allow more modern safety equipment into general aviation aircraft, FAA Administrator Michael Huerta said July 28. He said the agency is on track to finalize third class medical regulations within 180 days, and implement them within one year. Read more >>

King private pilot course embraces airmen certification standards

King Schools’ Private Pilot Practical Test (Oral Exam & Flight Test) video course has been completely updated based on the FAA’s new airmen certification standards (ACS), which took effect June 15. The company re-shot the course in high-definition video to provide a view into a model ACS checkride that covers every task outlined by the standards, King Schools announced at EAA AirVenture in July. Read more >>

‘Flight Training’ Poll closes Aug. 22

Monday, Aug. 22, is the last day in which your clients can submit feedback about your flight school in the 2016 Flight Training Poll. Participants will be eligible to win prizes from Aircraft Spruce, Jeppesen, Pilot Workshops, and Sporty’s. And you’ll receive useful feedback so that you can provide better service to your customers. This year we’re providing report cards for all nominees that receive at least five responses in the poll. Send your customers to this link.

Tiptoeing through TFRs and other tips

Are your flight instructors looking for tips to share with their students? In CFI to CFI, Rod Machado offers a clever visual mnemonic for remembering VFR weather minimums. Also NORAD explains how to work around TFRs. Flight instructors can subscribe and access the quarterly newsletter for free videos, courses, quizzes, and more.

Training Trends

Airline hiring agreements accelerate

By many indications, the regional airlines are hiring pilots as fast as they can. Prospects for students looking to make a career in the airlines have never been better—a fact verified by four announcements that occurred during EAA AirVenture 2016 in Oshkosh. Read more >>


Third class medical changes

Third class medical reform has been signed into law. We’d like to know what you think the changes will mean for your business model. Take the poll >>


n the July 26 issue, we wanted to know how long flight instructors typically stay at your flight school before moving on. Here are the results:

<em>Flight School Business</em>


Not quite viral

What’s it like when your flight school is featured on a national news website? First Landings Aviation owner Adam Valencic found out recently when a customer wrote a lengthy article on his accelerated sport pilot program at the Apopka, Florida, flight school. Read more >>

Quick tip

Fly-out season is in full swing, and many flight schools are making the most of it. Is yours? Willamette Aviation in Aurora, Oregon, is planning to a trip to the AOPA Regional Fly-In at Bremerton National Airport on Aug. 20. If Bremerton is too far away from your airport, we’ve got two more events scheduled for 2016. Take a look at our scheduled events—or plan an outing to the next airport over for a pancake breakfast. Pilots want a reason to fly and other pilots to fly with, and you can give them that.


Don’t ask

Now that the third class medical requirement has an expiration date, we can start thinking about how that might affect the industry. David Jack Kenny takes a look at the safety implications, and a surprising possible benefit that could result. Read more >>

Editor: Jill W. Tallman

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