Redbird Learning Opportunity!

Redbird Migration is an amazing gathering of aviation people from all over the country; a fun and exciting networking opportunity. Top trainers, administrators, and business people who run schools and university programs get together and share ideas and techniques. All these presentations are available live and archived online; tune in on the dedicated App! The AOPA Flight Training Excellence awards for the “best in the aviation” will also be announced at this event.

Some “food for thought; ask some “out of the box” questions!

Why can’t a certificated pilot (easily) rent an airplane anywhere like you rent a car? Why will some schools *not* rent to pilots they just trained and tested?

Why do pilots pass the “FAA Test” but insurance companies really are the ones who “set the standards!”

How can we expect CFIs with less than a year of total experience (teaching and sometimes even flying) to be “professional educators?” How “masterful” is *your* CFI?

Why do YouTube “CFI Rockstars” (with very little experience and “dual given”) perpetuate such terrible teaching technique?

My SAFE presentation (and see Redbird tab on the SAFE Toolkit App) targets the new (hour building) aviation educators that primarily train today’s pilots. CFIs (not DPEs) are the primary influencers in our industry, and we need to do better job educating, testing and mentoring them. The simple fact that 2/3s of CFIs have taught for less than a year, are poorly prepared to do this, and leave for the airlines at only 1500 hours is ruining the professionalism and safety of our industry. And we need experienced CFIs to mentor these beginners! Our training system increasingly focused on absolute ACS minimums leaves critical skills *untaught* and creates a spiral of diminishing skills. Some changes are so simple they are a slap in the face; e.g. if 60% of accidents occur during crosswind takeoff and landings, why don’t we train and test these skills? SAFE is advocating 10 logged crosswind landings (like night) for all initial pilot applicants.

On the business side, aviation continually accepts an 80% dropout rate and we teach flying exactly as we did in 1941 despite amazing new tools (like simulation) and modern educational techniques.  A huge part of the American population is not even interested in aviation; the 2021 Redbird Survey revealed 80% of Americans would *never* work in aviation. This fact, and the 6% female participation, demonstrate how poorly we market aviation as an exciting and available career or recreational possibility.

Please “follow” our SAFE blog to receive notification of new articles and also write us a comment if you see a problem (or to contribute an article). Download our (FREE) SAFE app for resources and news. Watch Redbird Migration LIVE!

Please Join SAFE and support our mission of building aviation excellence through superior education. Our amazing member benefits alone make this commitment worthwhile (the 1/3 off ForeFlight more than pays your member dues). Our super CFI Insurance is the best in the business!



Author: David St. George

SAFE Director, Master CFI (12X), FAA DPE, ATP (ME/SE) Currently jet charter captain.

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