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Starting part 107 high school class, reg question

jcarne

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Hello everyone, I have searched the web high and low and can't find the answer to my reg question. Hoping you guys can help out!

I am starting a high school class (I am the teacher, will have my 107) in the fall of 2024 in which I will teach the students the skills needed to pass the part 107 exam. A little background of myself, I am a part 61 CFI with a main career as a CTE teacher at a small school. In order to not risk my CFI credentials I want to really make sure I'm understanding and following regs here.

So my question is, can I teach this class with the students falling under the recreational regs 44809 provision? If so, the part that confuses me is the FAA says a high school without a JROTC program doesn't qualify as a higher education institute and must be a "charter of a CBO" to use 44809. So, how the heck does one go about getting chartered by a CBO? I know for a fact many high schools out there are engaging in a similar program; yet I find no where online where this topic has been discussed. Am I interpreting the regs correctly here? Thank you!
 
Thanks for the link. I have read that one; their situation was a little different due to money being involved. My class will not be allowed to utilize the drones for anything other than training until they get their 107.

The rule I am referencing is in the statutory notes on the bottom of this link.

Advisory circular 91-57C mentions it in 2.2.1.2.3 on page 7.

Anyone figured out how to get chartered through a CBO to satisfy that? I can fly indoors and avoid this but gym usage could be problematic due to schedules.
 
Thanks for the link. I have read that one; their situation was a little different due to money being involved. My class will not be allowed to utilize the drones for anything other than training until they get their 107.

The rule I am referencing is in the statutory notes on the bottom of this link.

Advisory circular 91-57C mentions it in 2.2.1.2.3 on page 7.

Anyone figured out how to get chartered through a CBO to satisfy that? I can fly indoors and avoid this but gym usage could be problematic due to schedules.


Correct me if I'm wrong but you will be doing this under Part 107 right?

The students will be under ~44809 but YOU would be under Part 107.
 
Correct me if I'm wrong but you will be doing this under Part 107 right?

The students will be under ~44809 but YOU would be under Part 107.
Yes that is correct. I have to go with Part 107 but they will be 44809 IF chartered by a CBO. Otherwise AC 91-57 says all operations will be Part 107.

Update: new development incase anyone else is looking for a similar answer in the future. The STEM+C CBO has a spot on their website to apply to be a charter. It was a quick and painless effort and I got an email quite rapidly after applying to be a charter.

None of the other CBOs have replied yet. I'm guessing a lot of the middle/high schools out there don't follow/know about this regulation but I'm sure you can imagine what I have invested in my part 61 certificates that I don't want to risk. This whole thing seems like one of the FAA's goofy rules but a rule nonetheless.
 
Yes that is correct. I have to go with Part 107 but they will be 44809 IF chartered by a CBO. Otherwise AC 91-57 says all operations will be Part 107.
........

@Vic Moss can you weight in on this? I think there is a misunderstanding here and I'd like a 3rd point of view. I may have it wrong.
 
I started one U.S. college program, helped start another, and consulted with other colleges on their programs. The regs were indeed clear that live flight operations instruction needed to be performed by instructors holding a current Pt. 107 certificate.

When we started, prior to the 2018 FAA Reauthorization, students flew as a Person Manipulating the Controls (PMC) with the Pt. 107 instructor supervising as the Remote Pilot in Command (RPIC). At the time we believed this was the only way. A problem was 1 RPIC = 1 PMC = 1 drone in the air.

We flew DJI/RYZE Tellos with optional thumb-stick controllers in the gym so we could get 5 or 6 students in the air for basic flight training.

Later, after 2018 regulations updates, it was clear that our “higher education” students were able to fly outdoors in the NAS under 44809, so the first day’s task was to get every student through the TRUST training/test/certification.

Because multiple departments owned older drones, and it isn’t at all easy to update gear in a public college, we looked into becoming a CBO and establishing FRIAs at our campuses in the early days of dealing with RID planning. Our Risk Manager was told by UASHelp/FAA that we were a school, not qualified to become a CBO. Reading the FAA web site that information may have been in error, or regulation-making hadn’t quite caught up to the then-new legislation.

I believe the question here has to do with how a high school program qualifies as “higher education” for learners to operate under 44809. Operating as a CBO or operating under the umbrella of a CBO with secondary education as part of its charter would seem to be a good legal authorization if the FAA is defining “higher education” as only those high schools with ROTC programs.

Or, what about AP programs? By definition those are higher ed classes, as are Dual Credit classes that the OP’s high school might articulate with an area college that has a STEM/STEAM, geography/GIS/geospatial, or digital media production drone program.
 
I believe the question here has to do with how a high school program qualifies as “higher education” for learners to operate under 44809. Operating as a CBO or operating under the umbrella of a CBO with secondary education as part of its charter would seem to be a good legal authorization if the FAA is defining “higher education” as only those high schools with ROTC programs.

Or, what about AP programs? By definition those are higher ed classes, as are Dual Credit classes that the OP’s high school might articulate with an area college that has a STEM/STEAM, geography/GIS/geospatial, or digital media production drone program.

Seth, awesome response with some great insight. Your highlight of the original question is almost right. There are three ways to operate under 44809 at an educational institute:

1) be a higher educational institute as defined Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 1001(a)). Here is the link (no high school will meet the requirements from what I can tell)
2) flown as part of an established Junior Reserve Officers' Training Corps (JROTC) program (we don't have one)
3) flown as part of an educational program that is chartered by a recognized CBO

AC 91-57 even clarifies by saying "Any elementary and secondary educational institutions, that are not institutions of higher education or do not fly UAS as part of a JROTC program, would either have to receive FAA recognition as a CBO or be chartered by a recognized CBO to operate under 49 U.S.C.§ 44809; otherwise, such institutions must conduct all operations underpart 107."

So long story short, we don't seem to qualify as a higher education institute and therefore need to operate under a CBO charter. The great mystery though was how to get chartered by one of the only four FAA approved CBOs?
 
OP, have you had any success with finding a CBO for this?

Are there local colleges that articulate any of their courses with high schools? This is common; what we found is that HS students could take a class in their school from a HS teacher who was also approved as a college instructor, under a college syllabus, registered for a college course and credit. These are known as Dual Credit or Dual Enrollment programs.

It would seem to be a good framework and legal authority if it’s accessible in your area.
 
OP, have you had any success with finding a CBO for this?

Are there local colleges that articulate any of their courses with high schools? This is common; what we found is that HS students could take a class in their school from a HS teacher who was also approved as a college instructor, under a college syllabus, registered for a college course and credit. These are known as Dual Credit or Dual Enrollment programs.

It would seem to be a good framework and legal authority if it’s accessible in your area.
Well I got recognized by STEM+C CBO. I submitted an application on their website (Google form) and received an email a day later saying I was a charter of their organization. The email was very brief and it all seemed surprisingly informal but I guess I have something to hang my hat on now. I also eventually received an email from FPV Freedom Coalition saying they could help but I haven't heard anything in about a week now.
 
Well I got recognized by STEM+C CBO. I submitted an application on their website (Google form) and received an email a day later saying I was a charter of their organization. The email was very brief and it all seemed surprisingly informal but I guess I have something to hang my hat on now. I also eventually received an email from FPV Freedom Coalition saying they could help but I haven't heard anything in about a week now.
Awesome news! All the best for your program in 2024 - I hope your students get a lot of learning and inspiration out of it.
 
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