Policy Letter 166

Subject

Quality Assurance (QA) for the Approved Check Pilot (ACP) Program

File Number

RDIMS # 459284

Date

2004.07.08

Policy Statement

QA for the ACP Program is a national responsibility. The Program is evolving and regions must endeavour to implement and ensure ACPs under their supervision maintain the national standard.

Applicability

This policy applies to all Commercial and Business Aviation (CBA) Inspectors involved with the ACP Program.

Background

Transport Canada (TC) has increasingly evolved the ACP Program to transfer more of the pilot checking responsibilities from TC Inspectors to ACPs and Freelance ACPs (FACPs). In response, the number of ACPs and FACPs has increased within the industry.

This initiative in conjunction with other established and forthcoming changes is aimed at reducing the amount of time an Inspector spends conducting Pilot Proficiency Checks (PPCs) in favour of the more critical auditing and surveillance functions.

The efficiencies gained from these initiatives will pave the way for the Inspectors to adopt a more proactive, supervisory role with respect to the ACP Program. In order to be effective the ACP Program will require that the Inspectors shift the focus of their surveillance activity from conducting PPCs to one of monitoring the ACPs and FACPs who now conduct the PPCs. To this end the Program Manager (PM ACP) is developing tools to assist the Inspector in accomplishing this task.

Policy

To verify that the ACP Program remains effective TC Headquarters will implement an ACP QA Program as follows:

The PM ACP will be responsible to conduct ACP recurrent courses for TC Inspectors and to approve and monitor ACP course providers. The PM ACP will endeavour to conduct an annual monitor on the Regional ACP Representative. The ACP Representative monitors will be arranged to coincide with other planned visits. Where this is not possible or practical, PM ACP may designate someone to conduct the monitor on his/her behalf.

In turn the Regional ACP Representative will monitor the performance of his/her region's CBA Inspectors. Specifically, he/she will conduct monitor check rides on Inspectors when certain triggers are revealed. A complaint from a client regarding the conduct of a check ride, a significant error noted in the conduct of a check ride, repeated errors in the completion of flight reports are some of the triggers. Time and resources permitting, the ACP Representative may also conduct an Inspector's monitor at the Inspector' request.

Failure to conduct an annual monitor on the Regional ACP representatives or monitoring of check rides for the CBA inspectors will in no way invalidate ACP privileges.

The CBA Inspector will be responsible to monitor the ACPs and FACPs under his/her supervision. The Inspector will continue to conduct PPCs on ACPs, Company Check Pilots (CCPs), and senior company personnel as required by chapter 2.2.3 and table 6.1.1 of the ACP manual. The Inspector may also conduct PPCs or unannounced monitors of CCPs conducting PPCs to cover a sampling of the company pilots. These check rides and monitors will be used to fulfill requirements of the frequency of inspection table.

As TC further devolves the pilot checking responsibilities to industry, TC will require better tools to monitor the ACP Program. To this effect TC will introduce a more objective and measurable rating scale. TC has selected a four-point scale for assessing candidates. The Flight Test Report - PPC forms (26-0249, 26-0279) will change to reflect the new scale. The improved information will enable Inspectors to better evaluate the candidate and an ACP's performance and rating reliability.

The monitor check form will also change to reflect this philosophy. A list of criteria has been developed against which the ACP will be evaluated objectively. There will always remain an element of subjectivity; however this will be minimised and will no longer be the prime method of evaluating a candidate.

The failure of an ACP's monitored PPC check ride will necessitate the intervention of the Inspector. The Inspector will propose a remedial training plan based on his/her observation of the performance. The ACP will be required to complete a monitored check ride after remedial training and prior to resuming his/her ACP duties.

An ACP course approval is required for anyone or any organization wishing to start an ACP course. PM ACP will review the course curriculum and the proposed course schedule. He/she will then monitor the initial course under the understanding that for candidates attending the course, passing the course is contingent upon the instructor passing the monitor. The course is approved largely on the basis of the in-depth knowledge of the course provider and his/her ability to deliver the information effectively and correctly. The course may only be delivered by the monitored individual and is not transferable to another instructor without him/her being monitored.

Periodically, PM ACP will conduct monitors of existing ACP courses to ensure consistency and to verify the course material is up to date. An Inspector attending an ACP initial or recurrent course offered by an outside agency is required to report any observed shortcoming to PM ACP. PM ACP will gather the information, assess and initiate follow-up remedial action as required.

Future Disposition

The introduction of these measures will be preceded by a training period. First the ACP Representative will require instruction on the new form and will be monitored according to the new ACP monitoring report. They will in turn indoctrinate their region's Inspectors who will then begin using the forms on ACPs and FACPs. Once Inspectors are familiar with the four-point rating systems of the amended monitor forms, the change to the new 26-0249 forms will be initiated. The amendments to the ACP manual will be released and ACP recurrent and initial training courses will begin instructing the new method of rating.

Coordinating with the Flight Training Aviation Education Program may affect the changeover date to the new 26-0249, 26-0279 forms. More information will be distributed when it becomes available.

Reference Number

This Policy Letter is designated AARX No. 166. 

Michel Gaudreau
Director
Commercial &Business Aviation