Redbird Migration

Posted by on Nov 5, 2015 in Aviation News | Comments Off on Redbird Migration

Tres and I just returned from the annual Redbird Migration Conference whichimages showcases new training concepts, innovative aviation marketing ideas and keynote speakers including Michael Huerta, the FAA Administrator. There are many significant issues being worked by the FAA including the new regulations for unmanned aerial systems (drones), a new certification system, a move toward education and correction rather than enforcement for unintentional pilot deviations and a re-write of the Part 23 regulations for aircraft certification.

I have attended the conference for the last four years and always find the information thought provoking and useful. This year, we heard a presentation from Susan Parson, the FAA lead representative on the new Airman Certification Standards which will become effective next year. If you haven’t heard of the ACS yet, you probably will soon. This will be a significant improvement over the current Practical Test Standards that we are now using for training and testing. We are busy adapting our training syllabi to match up to the ACS for Private and Instrument courses.

We got an update on George Bye’s electric airplane project which holds a lot of promise for the not too distant future. With operating costs of around $12.00 per hour, this will bear watching. The first deliveries are expected in around three years.

We heard a presentation from Roger Sharp about why applicants fail checkrides. Roger always has great insights about problems in aviation education and this was no different. Often the instructor fails to properly prepare the student for the nature of the test. The student expects an exam based on rote memorization of material while the Examiner expects the applicant to exhibit “Pilot in Command” abilities including organization, application and correlation of the material that he or she has learned. The applicant must be able to come up with reasonable solutions to common scenarios that arise in the course of a typical flight and articulate their answers. This is simple if the applicant is given opportunity to practice.

Joe Browndsc_0366-version-2, president of Hartzell Propeller, is working with aviation industry partners to develop an ongoing pilot proficiency program that will encourage pilots to seek out ongoing aviation training from affiliated flight schools and instructors. This is sorely needed and will be introduced in the coming year.

The conference drew approximately 225 attendees from around the country and overseas. Redbird certainly deserves a tremendous amount of credit for putting on this event for those of us involved in aviation education.