As a former FAA – Designated Pilot Examiner in Atlanta for over 32 years, Steve Shaner, Chief Flight Instructor for American Air, has given hundreds of FAA final oral tests and flight tests (check rides) to graduates of most of the schools in the area. He has first – hand knowledge of how the schools compare in terms of training quality and aircraft mechanical condition. As a flight school manager for over 40 years, Steve has interviewed and tested hundreds of flight instructor job applicants from around the nation. From these experiences, he has developed an accurate understanding of how most of the prominent schools compare nationwide.
From this extensive experience, including information from other FAA Examiners and professional flight instructors, Steve has observed some consistent trends in comparing the quality of training offered in the flight training industry. There are many eye-opening facts about how different flight schools operate that most people are unaware of when they look into learning how to fly. Steve has found that each flight school tends to fall into one of three different levels of performance – Level 1 – the highest standard, Level 2 – training to the FAA minimum standard and Level 3 – training below the FAA minimum standard. This system of school classification was created at AAFT and is not necessarily recognized at other flight schools. The Pilot Examiner that a flight school sends its students to for their FAA flight tests can reflect on the quality of training provided by that school.