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Flight School Selection Process

Flight School Selection ProcessEnrollment in an FAA-approved school usually ensures a high quality of training. FAA-approved schools meet prescribed standards with respect to equipment, facilities, personnel, and curricula. However, many excellent pilot schools find it impractical to qualify for the FAA certification, and are referred to as non-approved schools.

When you begin your flight school selection process, you must first understand the terms used in describing flight schools and their level of certification. The most basic level of flight training facility operates under Federal Aviation Regulation (FAR) Part 61. The regulation identifies the minimum certification requirements for all pilot and flight instructors. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has no direct oversight as to the day-to-day operations of flight schools operating under FAR Part 61.

One of the differences between FAA-approved schools and non-approved schools is that fewer flight hours are required to qualify for a pilot certificate in an FAA-approved school. The requirement for a private pilot certificate is 40 hours in a non-approved school, and 35 hours in an approved school. However, since most people require 60 to 75 hours of training, this difference may be insignificant for a private pilot certificate.

Flight schools come in two flavors, Part 61 and Part 141, which refer to the parts of the Federal Aviation Regulations (FARs) under which they operate. The most common and least important distinction between them is the minimum flight time required for the private certificate — 40 hours under Part 61, and 35 hours under Part 141.

The FAR Part 141 flight training facility differs from their Part 61 counterpart by the level of FAA participation. All FAR Part 141 schools must undergo a lengthy and very thorough evaluation by the FAA prior to conducting training. They must have in place a management structure that meets the minimum experience requirements as outlined in FAR Part 141. The FAR Part 141 course curriculum has a minimum standard outlined in the appendix section of FAR Part 141 and must obtain FAA approval prior to conducting training. Due to this increased FAA participation , FAR Part 141 training facilities are able to offer the same certification courses as FAR Part 61 facilities , but with reduced minimum requirements. The pilot applicants are held to the same standards as outlined in the appropriate PTS.

Flight School Location

Depending on your flight training needs, the location of the flight school may play a large role in the quality of the course. Florida is a great place for flight training as the weather stays warm throughout the year. If you select a training facility in a region that often experiences poor weather conditions such as rain, fog , thunderstorms , and strong winds, your number of flights may be reduced. On of the many factors that contribute to successful completion of flight school is flight time availability so choose wisely.

Flight School Aircraft and Maintenance

When discussing the aircraft utilized for flight training, the areas of interest are availability and maintenance. The training airplane is where you practice in the air what you’ve learned on the ground. High wing or low, it doesn’t make much difference. What’s important is how well the airplane is equipped and maintained. It’s also important that the school’s trainers are dedicated to training and not to rental. How many trainers a school has depends on the number of active students. Generally speaking, one trainer serves four or five full-time students. This ratio may be higher with part-time students. Another consideration is the fleet’s mix of primary, advanced, and multi engine trainers.

Because trainers are flown often and sometimes hard, how a school maintains its training fleet is important for both safety and scheduling. Asking questions about maintenance policies and procedures should be part of every school interview.

The availability of aircraft for you to conduct your training is important. A good number of aircraft as a minimum is three. This will better allow for scheduled and unscheduled maintenance, a more flexible flight schedule , and a better idea of the maintenance practices of the training facility. The number of aircraft that a school operates should be based upon the student load of that facility. So, if the school has only one aircraft or ten , the ability of that facility to offer you a comprehensive schedule to fit your needs as the customer is paramount. At no time should the quality of the training be compromised for the quantity of customers.

Maintenance of an aircraft must be performed. There are maintenance procedures outlined in the FARs that must be performed at given intervals. These maintenance procedures must be logged and endorsed by the appropriate maintenance personnel. You the student , soon to be the Pilot In Command of those same aircraft should become familiar with the aircraft that you fly. You will soon become responsible for determining whether an aircraft is in airworthy condition.

Flight School Flight Instructors

A good flight instructor is important because your life will depend on what he or she teaches you. Don’t hesitate to ask questions about the training and experience of the flight instructors. You might ask what the average flight time is and what the pass/fail rate is among the instructors. (A pass rate of 100 percent doesn’t indicate good instruction.) You might also talk to some of the other students at the school to ask about their flight instructors.

Your primary instructor should be at least a certificated flight instructor (CFI). Ensure that your instrument instructor has an instrument instructor rating (CFII). Instrument training received from a non-rated instructor can cause problems when it comes to meeting FAA requirements.

Pilot Student Center, Housing Availability

A lot of students from different countries wish to do their flight training in USA. It is your duty to research flight schools that have resources available to assist you with your flight-training career. If you are a flight student from another country – a flight school should have a counselor or a department for international students and housing options.

The Final Decision

What flight school you ultimately choose depends on the quality training you desire in a method convenient to your schedule. In earning your private pilot’s certificate, you will have achieved a “license” to learn. Aviation is an ever-changing activity, and good pilots are always learning.

A Checklist for Choosing a Good Flight School
  • Determine your aviation goals. Are you learning to fly for fun or do you plan to pursue a career?
  • Compile a list of schools to examine, and request literature from each. Review material from each school and answer the questions outlined earlier in this brochure.
  • Visit the final two or three schools that pass the test. Ask questions and get a feel for the personalities of the schools. Ask specific questions and insist on specific answers. Talk to other students and flight instructors.
  • Inquire about a written agreement that outlines the payment procedures.
Why Choose Aviator Flight School For Your Pilot Training

  • Licensed by the State of Florida Commission For Independent Education License #4155
  • Aviator Flight Training Academy is a Division of Aviator College of Aeronautical Science & Technology, which is licensed by the State of Florida Commission for Independent Education and Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges.
  • 27 Years in the Flight Training Industry
  • To date, Aviator has trained over 5000 pilots for the commercial airline industry
  • Only School Offering 200 Hours of Multi-Engine Time
  • Aviator is the only flight school that has a full 200 hours of multi-engine time included in our program
  • No Flight Training Devices (Simulators)
  • FTDs are not used towards your flight time for any ratings
  • Approved by the Federal Department of Education to offer Title IV Loans
  • Aviator has the ability to offer students federal funding on approved accredited programs
  • Job Placement Assistance with Regional Airlines
  • Aviator offers job placement assistance for our graduates
  • “A” Rating with United States Better Business Bureau
  • Classroom Environment – All classes taught in our educational center, NOT online

Contact Aviator

Schedule a Visit

To speak with an instructor contact the college at 772-672-8222.

Distributed by Viestly

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