To succeed as a student pilot, extensive studies on the ground as well as in the airplane is required. Our approach is working on integrating ground school education, public school curricula, and after school extracurricular activity. We offer introductory ground education classes through these avenues to all interested students, we also make more advanced ground training software available to students who demonstrate an interest in the program. Students are also required to undergo a pilot exam to receive a FAA mandated Medical Certificate, this is a requirement in order to act as a Pilot In Command (P.I.C).
Student pilots who are offered the opportunity to advance to the flight training lessons will fly with instructors with significant aviation experience, and who have demonstrated a passion for working with student pilots. Pilots begin with learning the fundamentals of aircraft handling, the takeoff, landing and in-air aircraft control. This must be accomplished to proficiency before proceeding to practice for solo takeoffs, landings as well as longer "cross-country" flights, and night flying. This process is heavily dependent on student progress, with 40 hours of flight time being the minimum required to obtain a Private Pilots Licence, a more realistic minimum hour limit is 50-55 hours of flight time. Although it is absolutely possible to obtain a license at 40 hours, and we encourage that sort of dedication, the typical amount of flight time for students to gain mastery of the basic concepts required for a pilot’s license is commonly in the hour range previously mentioned. To help reinforce the flight aspects of training we also utilize a ground based flight simulator, although it is not an airplane, it is a very fair representation of one. This device can be pivotal in the development of procedures, practicing voice communications with air traffic control, and many different situations you can not always replicate in an actual aircraft. We also use a similar computer based service for the ground based knowledge as well, this provides students with the flexibility of learning on their own time.
Once the student has demonstrated sufficient proficiency in all phases of ground and aviation skills, instructors provide final brush-up courses and schedule the student to be reviewed by an FAA examiner. The exam includes both ground and air components and is usually done over the course of one day (but can be a multi-day event if, for example, weather conditions do not permit for flight examination). The length of the entire training program depends heavily on student engagement and conditions permitting, but we aim to expedite the process to the utmost degree possible by incorporating ground school training in with existing educational programs and resources.