This week, our CEO, Andy McFarlane, talked to Ian Seager, Flyer magazine & Pilot Career News about our return to flying and how we are safeguarding our staff and students.
Over the past few weeks, in support of government guidance, we’ve continued to deliver a successful Ground School programme through our virtual technology. Ground School students have been studying from the safety of their homes, via video link with their TKI (Theoretical Knowledge Instructors), also from their homes. Whilst this presented them with a new way of learning, they’ve seen no interruption to their lesson programme.
Unfortunately, however, we did have to temporarily pause all flight training,
However, we’re delighted to announce that we are resuming flight training! Over recent weeks, we have been working hard to develop a safe flight training programme, that supports the government’s updates to social distancing and most importantly keeps our staff and students safe. We’re delighted to confirm that our proposal has been accepted by the CAA (Civil Aviation Authority) and DfT (Department for Transport) and that we can now resume flying.
Andy McFarlane, CEO Leading Edge Aviation states “We’ve not taken this decision lightly and have spent a great deal of time ensuring that we can manage this process. The wellbeing of our staff and students is always at the forefront of everything we do, and we’ll continue to monitor the situation closely. We have an agile team and safe effective working practices, so are ready to make whatever changes are necessary at any point in the process.”
Our new adjusted working practices for resuming flight training look at all areas of academy life such as student accommodation, academy space and resources, our aircraft, our teams. Students will work in small ‘student family groups’ based on who they are accommodated with and their training phase. We’ve re-arranged the academy so they can safely carryout their flight training, only within these groups with an assigned Flight Instructor, only coming to the academy when they are scheduled to fly. This will ensure that the number of people they are in contact with is strictly limited, but they still have a strong support network surrounding them.
We’ve also put a great deal of thought into how they will use the academy space, our simulator and our aircraft. We’re introducing deep cleaning regimes and have introduced new refreshment facilities for each ‘student family’, there’s no area of academy life that we’ve not considered. We’re even introducing a temperature check for everyone arriving at the academy, every day.
The programme will of course be different from our pre-Covid-19 programme, and we’ll continue to focus on safety, but importantly, our students will be back in the air and progressing their Commercial Pilots Licence.
Andy McFarlane, CEO Leading Edge Aviation states “We’d also like to thank our students and indeed our staff for their patience and support through this difficult time and we are looking forward to welcoming everyone back!”
Whilst we’re in phase two, we are still not accepting visitors and the majority of support staff will continue to work from home. We of course hope to be able to welcome visitors soon, but not before it is safe to do so, both for them and our teams.
If you’d like to find out more about training with us, click here for more information about our courses or call us today 01865 546300.