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Where have all the instructors gone??

Flying Instructors & Examiners A place for instructors to communicate with one another because some of them get a bit tired of the attitude that instructing is the lowest form of aviation, as seems to prevail on some of the other forums!

Where have all the instructors gone??

Old 5th Aug 2019, 17:01
  #21 (permalink)  
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: UK
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Originally Posted by blastcalvey View Post
After reading the many responses in the threads on instructor pay and prospects one can only draw the conclusion that instructing is not a recognised profession.

​​​​​Why, as put forward by some, would an instructor for instance have to want to be a commercial pilot and therefore have a plan for progression other than as a teacher?

The implication here is that an instructor is paid almost nothing because it's only a phase in a career path and not a profession in itself.

This leads one to think that actually, the only way to continue as an FI is to go commercial or get a non flying job and instruct part time.

And that implies that an instructor must have a job that pays enough to allow him/her to subsidise the students and schools! That's not what other professions have to allow for though.

So how can flight training be called a professional qualification? Does a car mechanic have another job so he can fix your car at a discount rate? Or does your osteopath work in a bar part time so that he can drop the price of fixing your back?

When an FI goes to get the qualifications he needs, he pays professional rates. But when he charges himself out to the student he recieves less than half what he should be earning.

My suggestion then, is on each hours flying, the FI should give the student about 20 minutes on the controls and only give half the available information in his briefings and general patter.

See how long it takes and how much it costs to learn to fly then.

Flight training is a job. Cut it with rose tinted specs if you want but it's a job. And it's a job that few can do well and requires tremendous commitment

So why are today's crop of instructors hell bent on giving those skills away so that tomorrow's instructors never even step forward?

Do you really want to fly that much? While you try to shove wet spaghetti up a cats behind?
Personally I'm done with being insulted by the industry. Good luck if you think it's acceptable.
spot on.

I work part time as an fi lucky to have a well paid main job, I recently left my old school to go a school which pays a lot more. The owner/manager response was “why are you going there, you don’t need the money”.

I replied with “correct, I don’t. But it is also not my job to supply you with cheap labor in order for you to make a profit!”

it it is rife across the industry from fo to airlines. Owners know we love it, so therefore think they are doing us a favor by giving us a job!
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Old 13th Aug 2019, 08:51
  #22 (permalink)  
Join Date: May 2001
Location: UK
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Interesting thread, I recently approached AOPA about renewing my FI certificate and they were very helpful but frankly after looking at the requirements I was discouraged. Aged 62 I was originally an RAF Instructor on the Hawk with a ppl from a Flying Scholarship so did my first civil instructor training at Coventry with Piers and was tested by Hector Taylor at Nottingham in 1987. Piers was a first class trainer, Hector a very sharp old man who missed nothing and the CAA a sensibly run regulator.

I trained pilots at a variety of flying clubs while in the RAF, last renewed my FI with Ted Girdler down at Manston in 1995 and then dropped it as I progressed into civil aviation. I did my first Airbus Tour at Excalibur later in 1995 and flew with Hector's son. In 2004 I briefly renewed my rating at Humberside but did not instruct as I was busy and did not want to steal time off new pilots running through the self improver/modular route.

I have been a QSP on the Tutor since 2011 and for a number of years owned and flew my own tail-wheel aircraft. Today, on a 50% airline contract I was tempted to re-qualify but the process is a pain, the costs are irritating and the flying schools often badly run and exploitative. I love flying but the industry is ugly and the over regulation of everything associated with GA extremely tiresome.....just not worth it.
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Old 14th Aug 2019, 09:11
  #23 (permalink)  
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In similar vein, the economics of being an FE at PPL level don't look very appealing given the cost of obtaining the rating and the renewal costs. Does the income cover these?
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Old 18th Aug 2019, 09:49
  #24 (permalink)  
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Maybe this is a UK only problem?
In Germany there is still a high demand of FIs.
I am myself the Head of Training of a big german ATO.
We pay 60k Euro plus for qualified instructors (CPL/ IR / CRI MEP).

Are we talking about the UK only or do you see it as a European problem?

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Old 19th Aug 2019, 05:23
  #25 (permalink)  
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Location: Great South East, tired and retired
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Is this thread aimed at somebody whose only aim is to teach?

If so, there is a bit of a worry attached. Such a person has just finished his/her basic licence, and then does a further 40(?) hrs of flight training to qualify as an instructor of the lowest grade. This instructor requires a lot of supervision from the start, and only after a number of hours, is allowed to teach with minimal supervision.

But what is he teaching? After a basic licence, all he has done is cover each flying sequence in detail ONCE, with some further revision before the test. He knows the syllabus, having seen it all in a canned situation, under the watchful eye of an instructor, and has most likely never been in a situation where some real piloting skill and decision-making has been needed.

Where is the depth of experience? It ain't there, so the partially blind lead the totally blind around the circuit or the canned nav trips or the few permitted confined areas again and again. He might build some hours, but they are not particularly worthwhile hours, and if the blind student puts the half-blind instructor into a real pickle, there might be a little whoopsie.

To be an instructor, one should first have flown in the real world, on your own, no Grade 1 watching and correcting, and where your dumb decisions have to be lived with. Do your apprenticeship properly.

There are a lot of good instructor jobs around, I was paid around $750 per hour of flight (not counting the endless hours of long briefs, debriefs, class lectures and simulator time). Only real reason to leave was my inability to tolerate the attitude of the foreign students, who had paid their money and expected the knowledge to be poured into their heads and never required to show that any of it stayed there.
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Old 19th Aug 2019, 07:00
  #26 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Ascend Charlie View Post
Is this thread aimed at somebody whose only aim is to teach?

There are a lot of good instructor jobs around, I was paid around $750 per hour of flight....
I'd be interested in some of that . What would be your suggestion, experience wise then?

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Old 19th Aug 2019, 10:01
  #27 (permalink)  
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Get your 15000 hours up, and the job is yours for the asking.

Last edited by Ascend Charlie; 19th Aug 2019 at 19:31.
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Old 19th Aug 2019, 12:49
  #28 (permalink)  
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I wasn't asking what your experience was, more what experience you think a (say) PPL instructor should have?
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Old 19th Aug 2019, 21:24
  #29 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Ascend Charlie View Post
Get your 15000 hours up, and the job is yours for the asking.
$750 an hour ? 15000 hrs required ?

i smell something and it’s not roses .
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Old 20th Aug 2019, 01:02
  #30 (permalink)  
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Mr Proach, take an annual salary, divide it by the hours flown, and you get a number.
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Old 2nd Sep 2019, 20:01
  #31 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2007
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I have an FI renewal coming up, either a flight test of a seminar.
The examiner knows his stuff, it is a worthwhile lesson as well as a test.
The seminars are generally hosted by some very very skilled and knowledgeable people.
However by the second day they are tiresome. After doing two of these they are irksome.
I am looking at a third one shortly, I am thinking of letting my rating go than spending £450 on the course, hotel, food, fuel etc.
Really, is that the best way to keep an instructor interested? Especially when they are on £20 an hour, before tax.
Some of the lectures in the seminars are just completely pointless.

So why not every year an examiner comes to the school, sits through a couple of lessons, gives the blurb that the CAA want you to know and then picks a couple of names out of the hat and do a flight test with them.
Then get the school to cough up, or better still the CAA.
As you can bet your next pint, they are not going to charge their staff to do a career development course or a personal growth retreat.
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Old 2nd Sep 2019, 20:33
  #32 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: uk
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Seminars are ok for someone that's been out of instructing for quite a few years, but if current a waste of time.
The written stuff they provide should be provided by the CAA, even if it's a pdf online.
Just do the flight with the FIE instead.
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Old 3rd Sep 2019, 08:37
  #33 (permalink)  
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Retired now but having got back into GA I was contemplating trying to get an FI rating in the UK. Reading some of the replies on thus thread, I am somewhat discouraged !
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Old 3rd Sep 2019, 09:39
  #34 (permalink)  
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The latest Part FCL amendment, yet to be ratified, proposes a change to the Seminar requirement:
“FCL.940.FI — Revalidation and renewal
(a) Revalidation
(1) To revalidate an FI certificate, holders shall fulfil at least two out of the three following requirements before the expiry date of the FI certificate:
(ii) they have completed instructor refresher training as an FI at an ATO or at the competent authority.
and for Renewal:
If the FI certificate has expired, applicants shall, within a period of 12 months before the application date for the renewal complete instructor refresher training as an FI at an ATO or at a competent authority
There is no indication of what that refresher training might consist of or its duration. No doubt it will be for the ATO to decide.
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Old 3rd Sep 2019, 09:43
  #35 (permalink)  
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Looking forward, say 10 years - will there be a shortage of MEP instructors? (if not one already).
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Old 3rd Sep 2019, 10:08
  #36 (permalink)  
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More than likely there will be an accompanying AMC laying out the broad structure of refresher training, as there is currently for the content of the seminar.

It is interesting that the EC have changed the wording (and effect) of this amendment from the original EASA Opinion. In its Opinion, EASA made clear that the change in wording was simply to align the requirement with other instructor ratings [sic] and that the wording in the associated AMC would indicate that the refresher training should be held as a seminar. There was also a requirement that, should the FI certificate have lapsed by more than 3 years the instructor should undergo training following a syllabus established by an ATO, implying that this training was distinct from the seminar.

The EC have now removed the link between the training and the seminar and have also removed the 3 year cut-off between the two types of refresher training in the event of renewal, consequently confusing the issue. However, since the declared intention of EASA is that the term 'refresher training' should be synonymous with 'refresher seminar' unless specifically stated otherwise, it would seem logical that the seminar will survive in all cases. The again, when was logic or common sense ever of value in dealing with the EU?

The actual text from Opinion 5/2017 is:

The requirement in (a)(1)(ii) is amended to align the text with all other instructor ratings by replacing ‘refresher seminar’ with ‘refresher training’. To avoid too many changes in the training programmes, the AMC text to this requirement is amended with a wording that indicates that the refresher training for the revalidation and renewal of the FI certificate should be held as a seminar. Regarding ‘renewal’ in (b), the requirement is aligned with the other instructor certificates for text-standardisation reasons. To date, the requirements for the renewal provide regulations for a renewal after any lapsed period of time. These requirements were taken over from JAR-FCL 1 where licences had a validity period of five years. This is no longer the case. Therefore, it seems to be appropriate that in the case the instructor rating has lapsed for more than 3 years, the instructor has to receive instructor refresher training as a flight instructor in an ATO following a training syllabus established by the ATO and pass an assessment of competence. The details to be considered by the ATO are detailed in the amended AMC1 FCL.940.FI and FCL.940.IRI, and were aligned with the AMC for other instructor ratings. The significant difference from other instructor certificates to require more training for the renewal only after the rating has lapsed for more than 3 years was specifically introduced to avoid unnecessary burden on GA. The period of 3 years was chosen because an instructor rating is valid for 3 years.
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Old 3rd Sep 2019, 12:34
  #37 (permalink)  
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Reading Whopity’s post #34 above seems to have simplified the renewal process. I am planning to renew my SEP instructor rating, and from what I had read I expected to have to carry out refresher training at the discretion of a training organisation, and an instructor test, and attend a seminar. From post # 34 this seems not to be the case and I just have to do the first two. Is that actually the case ?
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Old 3rd Sep 2019, 15:40
  #38 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 2004
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All you need to renew at the moment is a Assessment of Competence and a Seminar in a 12 month period. The refresher training at a trainng organisation has not been with us for some time. Training as required to pass the test and can be done with the examiner. If your FI rating is still in the front of the licence the FIE or Seminar provider can sign you up, or if not the FIE can give you a temp certificate..
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Old 5th Sep 2019, 05:45
  #39 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by beamer View Post
Retired now but having got back into GA I was contemplating trying to get an FI rating in the UK. Reading some of the replies on thus thread, I am somewhat discouraged !
I’m not retired yet, but was thinking of renewing , but with all the hurdles financial and otherwise I’ll have to wait until the schools are so desperate they offer to part fund it !

maybe wait until the air cadets are up and running and try and become a SLMG instructor ?
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Old 8th Sep 2019, 09:09
  #40 (permalink)  
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I have only just stumbled upon this and the "worst decision" thread, and I empathise with a lot of blastcalvey's sentiments.

I have been an FI for over 30 years and thoroughly enjoyed it, but part-time only because I needed the day job to keep me afloat. I am now 'retired' from the day job and would like to contribute to relieving the apparent 'shortage problem', but have been unable to secure any part-time work at my local aerodrome (which has three fixed-wing schools). For me the problem seems to be 'part-time' and, dare I say, age. One of the schools emphasised that they needed full-timers continuously on-site, and had no need for part-timers. Another has kindly 'kept' me on their books' for part-time work, but not called me since my previous renewal. I have been offered work, but some significant distance away where commuting costs render that as totally impractical. There are limits to how much of my own funds I am prepared to spend to teach wealthy students, therefore I have accordingly allowed my FI rating to lapse. If there really is a 'shortage' then it's more the industry's loss than mine.
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