Aviation maintenance technical schools are facing unprecedented challenges during the coronavirus outbreak. With massive school closures, part 147 institutions must find innovative ways to serve their students. Get a brief on FAA guidance providing relief for schools that do not currently have distance learning approval, best practices from other schools that are getting online platforms up and running, and information on online resources available for programs that decide to go online.
The webinar will take place on Friday, Mar 27, 2020 1:00 PM CDT.
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar. Those that register but are not able attend the live version will receive a link to the recorded version.
In lieu of the growing coronavirus concerns, the council will hold its traditionally springtime event in the fall. The 2020 conference which was originally scheduled for March 30-April 1, will now take place Sept. 13-16, 2020. See the latest conference information and agenda on the conference web page.
The conference will occur in place of the Washington Fly-in, which will be cancelled in its entirety. We regret the inconvenience and disappointment this has caused, and thank the membership for its patience and understanding as the association works through the process of rescheduling.
This postponement will no doubt create questions, and we ask for your patience in advance as we respond to a high volume of emails and phone calls. Please allow up to a week for us to respond to your inquiries. In the meantime, here are some answers to what we anticipate to be the most commonly-asked questions.
Should I cancel current hotel reservations?
For those individuals who made a hotel reservation through the ATEC room block at the Worthington Renaissance Fort Worth Hotel, the hotel has already cancelled your reservation. If you did not receive a cancellation notification from the hotel via email, please contact the hotel directly to confirm cancellation. We will let the community know when a new hotel room block has been secured for the new conference dates. Attendees may rebook accommodation at that time.
Do I need to re-register for the Annual Conference now scheduled for September?
No. All current attendee registrations will be carried over to the September dates. There is nothing you need to do to secure a seat at the September event. See the latest attendee list to confirm whether you are already registered.
What if I'm currently registered and cannot attend in September?
You can cancel your registration for a full refund, or we can credit your organization's account to apply to a future event registration. Please submit all cancellation requests to Tarra Ruttman at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What if I already reached out to cancel my attendance due to flight restriction or other coronavirus-related reason?
All attendees registered as of March 9 will remain on the registration list; your registration cancellation request was not processed if it was received last week. If you would like to confirm cancellation for the September event, please send an email to Tarra Ruttman at email@example.com.
What should I do about my flight reservations?
Please refer to your airline carrier’s policies regarding fees associated with cancelling or rescheduling flights. Most if not all carriers are waiving cancellation and rebooking fees.
Will there be changes to the event agenda?
As of right now we do not anticipate any changes to the agenda, the entire program will be shifted to the new dates. That said, any modification required as we coordinate re-bookings with conference vendors and partners will be reflected as they are available on the online agenda.
Will this impact the 2021 conference dates?
The 2021 event will proceed as scheduled. (We were going to save announcement for the conference, but, drumroll please...) The 2021 ATEC Annual Conference will be hosted by United Airlines at its Flight Training Center in Denver. Mark your calendar for March 28-31, 2021!
The Federal Aviation Administration's Designee Standardization Branch have moved the Recurrent DME Part II Training to a virtual format as the result of Covid-19. Those who registered for the recurrent training scheduled for April 2 in Fort Worth will have access to the virtual training, but timing depends on the establishment of the virtual training format.
“It is our intent, by offering Recurrent Designated Mechanic Examiner Part II recurrent training in an alternative format to minimize the effects on your training and your ability to conduct oral and practical tests,” said the agency.
It advised those choosing not to attend the virtual training will be able to attend an in-person training sometime later this year.
Once the virtual training is established, trainees will receive a guide on how to access the offering, thus eliminating the need for travel. While the Windows platform is preferred, students will be able to access the virtual classroom via their electronic device with internet connectivity.
Follow up alerts on how to access the offering and material will be provided no later than the end of March. If you have questions, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 405-954-6495.
For the seventh year in a row, the mikeroweWORKS Foundation’s Work Ethic Scholarship Program is accepting applications for the next generation of skilled workers looking to get trained for jobs that are in demand. All aircraft-mechanics-in-training are invited to apply.
Due to the global COVID-19 pandemic, the mikeroweWORKS Foundation has decided to extend the deadline by one month. Work ethic scholarship applications must now be submitted by April 30th at 11:59 PM PDT.
All interested should visit www.mikeroweWORKS.org/scholarship to learn more about the program and access the application.
The assets of the Plattsburgh Aeronautical Institute (PAI) will be sold at public auction after the school closed its doors in 2019.
The Clinton Essex Warren Washington Board of Cooperative Education Services (CEWW BOCES) is holding the auction which includes the FAA Part 147 Airframe and Powerplant curriculum, equipment tooling, supplies and multiple aircraft associated with the school. PAI developed a quality program and remained in good standing with the FAA during it’s 10 years as a Part 147 school. Bids and requests to acquire individual items will not be accepted.
For more information contact James McCartney III at (518) 561-1000 43. A listing of photographs and items to be auctioned can be found at the CEWW BOCES website http://www.cves.org/aviation-auction/
***Update*** The ATEC Annual Conference will be rescheduled. The team is currently working on postponement dates and will notify the membership of the reschedule no later than Tuesday, March 17. Thank you for your patience as we work through all the details to ensure a smooth transition to a fall event.
The 2020 ATEC Annual Conference will take place as planned. The safety, wellbeing and experience at the event is a top priority. We are following official guidance and working with our host to put the best preventative measures in place.
Executive leadership and our host Tarrant County Community College, are actively monitoring the situation, including the steps being taken both by local, state, and federal authorities to limit the risks to the public.
We will immediately inform attendees should there be any significant changes and will keep our website up to date with the latest information.
As ever, we will do everything we can to ensure it’s a great event.
***Update*** FAA has issued a memorandum to local offices providing guidance on processing deviations to part 147 course content delivery. Download it here.
The memo directs FAA personnel to authorize temporary delivery of content through distance learning. To facilitate a school's request for temporary distance learning authorization, ATEC is making its distance learning application template available for free to all ATEC member schools. To download it, add the template to your cart and enter the members only password in the coupon code field. (Don't know the members-only password? Email Tarra.)
The Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak has been declared a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) by the World Health Organization (WHO). The impact of this virus has caused multiple states and cities within the US to take action by reducing or limiting public gatherings which includes the closure of schools in some locations. These closures may impact student learning and schedules of some part 147 Aviation Maintenance Technician Schools (AMTS).
The FAA is preparing a devision memo for all Flight Standards District Offices (FSDO) with oversight responsibilities of AMTS. The intention is to provide a path forward for AMTS that could minimize interruptions to student learning.
ATEC is working closely with the agency and has offered its expertise to help draft the language so that it provides a workable solution for all involved. The deviation memo is expected to publish by early next week. Stay tuned for more information as it is available.
With 11 million jobs and $1.6 trillion in annual economic activity, the aviation industry is a key economic driver, an aviation coalition noted in its letter to the Senate Transportation, Housing & Urban Development (T-HUD) Chair Susan Collins and Ranking Member Jack Reed, urging full funding for the aviation grant programs dedicated to the education of pilots and aviation maintenance technicians.
The grant programs, authorized by the 2018 FAA Reauthorization Act, sets aside $5,000 per year for each of the two grant initiatives. The coalition urged Collins to make full funding a part of the 2021 Transportation, Housing and Urban Development and Related Agencies Appropriations bill. It also dispatched a letter to House T-HUD Chair David Price and Ranking Member Mario Diaz-Balart thanking them for including the grant funding in their 2020 bill and urging continued support for the programs as they deliberate the 2021 funding bill.
“Today, the aviation industry faces a dire shortage of trained pilots, aviation technicians and other professionals necessary to fly, maintain, and repair commercial, recreational and military aircraft,” said the letter which is enthusiastically supported by ATEC. “These shortages come at a time when demand for new pilots and mechanics is rising due to increased consumer demand for air travel, new aircraft are entering the global fleet, and the current aviation workforce reaches retirement age.”
The coalition of more than 40 aviation organizations noted the grants promote public-private sector collaboration between businesses, labor organizations, schools, and governmental entities to pursue innovative strategies to give young people an accessible career path in aviation as a pilot or professional technician and to develop a 21st Century aviation workforce. The coalition also said the programs will empower communities to engage directly in workforce development efforts, encouraging local investment and job growth.
In September, ATEC sent a written request providing a proposed solution that would allow aviation maintenance technician schools to create more streamlined partnerships with other educational institutions.
In its letter, ATEC suggested that the FAA dispense with its continued reference to “satellite locations,” something the agency says is “prohibited” under the regulations. Instead, ATEC called on the agency to make policy changes that would allow schools to deliver AMTS content to enrolled students away from its “primary location,” via “additional fixed locations” provided on the AMTS operations specification.
Under the proposal, a part 147 certificated school could provide its curriculum at a partner high school and bestow upon that high school student AMTS credit without that student first enrolling in the A&P program. Since the high school is provided as an “additional fixed location” on the part 147 operations specifications, that location would also be subject to FAA oversight.
In its response, the FAA doubled down on its position that part 147 prohibits an AMTS from providing courses at an additional training location, “the current regulations in part 147 do not expressly allow for nor facilitate the use of satellite training locations by evidence of the FAA’s intent to allow an AMTS to have a single location.”
The conclusion suggests the agency misunderstood ATEC’s request. ATEC did not ask for the FAA to allow for an AMTS satellite location, it asked that the FAA take a new approach through utilization of operations specifications, one that would not require formal rulemaking and allow greater flexibility and bypass widespread confusion that will undoubtedly arise if the agency’s regulatory proposals in the part 147 NPRM and SNPRM come to fruition.
ATEC’s September letter was followed by extensive in person discussions with regulators at its annual Fly-in. Even given the seeming agreement with ATEC’s position at that time, the agency has refused to implement—or even properly address—ATEC’s proposed solution.
In ATEC's most recent member survey, FAA-imposed limitations was cited as one of the top barriers to development of AMTS-high school dual enrollment programs.
ATEC will not be deterred. Indeed, if passed, the PARTT 147 Act would force agency adoption of the proposed framework, despite the reluctance. That bill continues to garner additional support from legislative leaders, following recent visits to the Hill from a group of ATEC representatives. Join the effort, contact your representatives and encourage them to support the bill.
Stay tuned for updates on everything ATEC members need to know as well as ways that you can help the council and the AMTS community.