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Old 8th Nov 2013, 20:32
  #18 (permalink)  
Ebbie 2003
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Barbados
Posts: 362
I saw this story in the online Telegraph and while I expected the right wing backlash it did make me think.

Apparently it has been officially determined that state aid is available for costs of training to be a commercial pilot.

This seems to run contrary to usual practice where such training is not deemed legitimate educational activity -specifically (unless some thing has changed since I left the UK) once cannot use the student loan system, and the cost is not subsidized (notwithstanding that there are now "fees" they do not cover normal educational institutions' actual costs, they continue to be subsidized).

So maybe now a commitment to a commercial course will get the soft loans (student loans) with deferred repayments and also some government subsidy - not a lot, just the same as the average student studying any other vocational course; if one wants to revitalize the UK flight training industry and maybe forestall the looming pilot shortage that would be one way to do it - this case seems to suggest that under the right/wrong circumstances flight training is a legitimate educational course of study.

On the general point I recall many years ago (the early 80's recession) of guys I knew who did not have work getting the "Rock n Roll" paying for driving lesson to aid their job prospects (it did work by the way).

I think instead of writing to ones MP along the lines of "bloody asylum seekers coming over here leaching off the state" it would be better to have a campaign to see flight training as a legitimate educational goal in itself and thus open it up as a career to more people - develop the industry and, as a spin off, improve airfield facilities, modernize the fleet and, as is the way with these things, maybe reduce the cost.

To illustrate my point, I trained at North Perry in Florida - next door was the Broward County Community College's flight training facility with a huge fleet of brank spanking new SR20's and 22's - if you wanted a career in aviation that's where you went and yes, it was subsidized.
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