Chairman’s Message: Raising the bar


John DorceyRaising the bar in aviation education is a SAFE tagline used since early in our history. I consider the phrase more than a marketing gimmick; I see it as a restating of our SAFE mission. Consider how you would go about “raising the bar in aviation education.” Certainly you would use quality resources – lesson plans, curricula and other instructional resources. You may seek guidance from other, more experienced educators when facing a challenge or you’d provide that guidance when asked. You might debate topics of interest in a discussion group or forum. You could earn and maintain professional accreditation. You would certainly enhance your education by developing a habit of lifelong learning. Each of these items is listed within the SAFE mission statement. All of these opportunities are available to every SAFE member. Any and all of these actions result in raising the bar in aviation education.

SAFE will be five years old in a few months, not very old when compared to many organizations. We have accomplished much in that short time. We have developed a mentoring program, a CFI liability insurance program and an online resource center. We have conducted a multi-day Pilot Training Reform Symposium, developed a simulator based proficiency program using real-life scenarios and now use that program as a basis for Regional Pilot Proficiency Projects. Teaming with Master Instructors LLC SAFE members now have a professional accreditation program. We have distributed grants and scholarships to assist aviation educators at all levels. SAFE has commented on numerous NPRMs and is represented on a number of FAA and aviation industry committees. SAFE has been busy raising the bar in aviation education.

These accomplishments didn’t just happen. Join me in thanking a large number of folks for their tireless efforts at moving SAFE along. Of course our Executive Director, Doug Stewart, is front and center. Doug is provided guidance and support by the nine current members and seven past members of the SAFE board. The board consults with 11 committees staffed with 66 SAFE members. That makes a total of 75 SAFE members volunteering their time for the betterment of SAFE. My sincere thanks to each and every one of those individuals.

SAFE has several goals for the upcoming year including K-12 educator outreach, conducting additional Pilot Proficiency Projects, expanding our educator grant program and enhancing our communication streams. This magazine is one part of that communications enhancement. Did you know that SAFE is active in social media via Twitter, FaceBook, YouTube and LinkedIn? Join us on any or all of these connections.

In closing, I ask that you help your organization in its outreach efforts to K-12 educators. We all know at least one teacher. Discuss with them how adding aviation concepts can make their lessons come alive. Ask them to go for an airplane ride, to visit an airport or to have a guest speaker come to their classroom. Ask them to join SAFE.

Together we can raise the bar in aviation education!

-By John Dorcey

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