The need for a flight training individual education plan

Scott Spangler has been writing a series of posts about fixing some of the problems and issues with flight training that tends to cause high dropout rates and this has lead him to come up a flight training individual education plan or FT-IEP that is well worth mentioning. His FT-IEP is meant to cover some of the dropout motivators that were identified by an AOPA survey (e.g. poor educational quality, poor information sharing and poor customer focus) and could cover the following areas:

  • Educational Goal. The name of the certificate and/or rating desired by the student.
  • Measure the Achievement. An itemized list of how the student, flight instructor and school will achieve the of that goal.
  • Educational Plan. The curriculum that plots a route to the student’s educational goal.
  • Lesson Plans. Specific plans that build upon the curriculum and covers everything from homework to pre- and post-lesson briefings.
  • Resources. What resources such as ground school courses and materials, classrooms, training aids, simulators and training aircraft will be needed.
  • Instructor Fees. The amount the flight instructor will be paid for his or her services and just how much goes into the pocket of the school.
  • Aircraft Rental Costs. This should include the costs for gas, oil, insurance, regular maintenance and equipment overhauls and depreciation as flying can be an expensive endeavor once a pilot certificate is earned.
  • Consequences. This should cover what happens if anyone on the team (student, flight instructor and the flight school) is not prepared.
  • Lesson Frequency. Time is money and flight training (along with dropping out of flight training) can be expensive. Scott also noted that students learn much faster if they fly twice  week rather than twice a month.

Scott also wrote that such a document need not be complicated and its something that a student, an instructor or a flight school can initiate with components that meet a student’s needs and circumstances. After all, its a win-win situation for everyone when a student chooses to complete rather than dropout of flight training.

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