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  1. And you think this is a BAD THING??? If the controller doesn't care to keep up with changes, then why the heck would we keep him around? If you kept insisting that 2+2=5 after spending years doing my taxes, I sure as heck would not keep you as my accountant just to "connect an accountant to a tax payer"? If we're going to have this kind of standard, we're going to end up in IVAOs "no ARTCC" levels at some point - i.e. controllers who don't even know what a runway is and I for one, don't think I want to stand for - or be associated with that sinking ship. Matt - your comments come across like VATSIM 1. Has a severe lack of controllers online, and 2. Has no competition and won't in the future. It's becoming very clear that the BoG is interested in getting numbers, no matter if someone is an S1 forever, rather than keep their C1s around who is VATSIMs biggest issue - C1 retention.
    8 points
  2. This is the crux of the issue. An incompetent controller who refuses to improve will drive away competent controllers. @Matt In the examples you provided, two of them refused to comply with the standards or re-train themselves in order to comply with standards. In the follow-up, you asked "So you would prefer to fly on unicom than fly with a controller who's not perfect?" No one is demanding perfection here, what we want is competence that simulates reality which is vastly different from perfection. I would rather fly with no ATC than be vectored in circles by an incompetent controller 10 out of 10 times. As a controller, I would in fact not log on if I know I'm going to have to fix and undo the errors of another controller who refuses to follow procedures or make an effort to do things the right way. It is not worth the effort and frustration I would have to put in when the other person refuses to put in any effort of their own.
    7 points
  3. Your entire statement just proves, that you prefer low quality, all-around-annoying incompetent ATC, rather than single departure of this kind of person, who is refusing to improve, lol. Because of the decisions as per above, you save a single, incompetent departure from the network, making tons of people dedicated to the network going off, because they are driven nuts by these kind of people.
    6 points
  4. I read through this entire topic - and it appears the representative (sorry if this is not the correct phrasing) for the BoG is completely out of touch with what almost every person who controls on the network or manages an ARTCC in some form appears to be trying to get across. I am that pilot (the one who Matt initially proposed opinions from closer to the beginning of the topic). I am a pilot on the network - a pilot who has had a lot of amazing experiences. As someone who sometimes takes breaks, I myself struggle with coming back after a while. - add the responsibility of a controller, and in the long term, the overall quality will suffer dramatically. In a sense, not much different from a pilot coming back into an FNO after being gone for 9 months because friends are hanging on discord. Controllers will be frustrated, pilots will be frustrated, and the entire ARTCC and that sector won't look too great. We are all human. Who knows - maybe a few can come back on with a minimum of training after a year. The idea that someone can hop on to meet the minimum requirements in an area that gets little to no traffic is not only disheartening but seems to completely go against what vatsim and the people using the network has strived for. Quality and upholding of a minimum standard. Requirements are being discussed which are more realistic - and yet they appear to be getting shut down with things that are completely unrelated. Then, when those issues are also addressed by various controllers, something else comes into play that has absolutely nothing to do with the proposed policy change. These are people on the ground - people who are going through these issues, seeing them first hand and trying to come up with solutions that work for everyone. And so far as I can tell they are being dismissed time and time again, despite being more realistic both in a real world sense and from a controller POV, and having an end result that would be moving vatsim in a more positive direction. I'm no controller, I'm no manager, I'm just a guy who enjoys the network and the time and effort people have put into making it a place that I can enjoy. Right now I feel like this is a way to make the numbers climb and eventually lead to burnout of senior staff, managers and controllers who already devote their doubtlessly limited free time to make this network what it is. Clearly something needs to change - everyone but one person is giving countless alternatives, so it seems. These are just my thoughts - adding one more voice to a flurry of similar, in hopes that it will help.
    6 points
  5. GCAP is the perfect opportunity as far as I'm concerned to "reclaim" what a C3 should signify and to set some baseline standards for attaining the rating. The problem that it needs to fix is that the C3 rating is so inconsistent across the network in what it signifies and represents. Anecdotally speaking, there are places on the network where they are given out with almost no requirements, and others where there are multiple stringent measures in place to ensure that the rating is seen as a proper achievement. The policy does a good job in places of trying to set some sort of a standard, but as it stands, the C3 requirements couldn't be further from that. I've already stated that I don't agree that a course like this is needed, let alone mandatory. My reasoning for this is that leadership is not shown or learnt by completing an eLearning course, it's shown by committing to your vACC, putting in countless hours working more than the average member and helping everybody out. @Matthew BartelsI really like the idea of wanting to promote leadership qualities for the C3s, but I'm not convinced an online course is the way to go. In VATEUD, there are requirements that have to be fulfilled before you can be put forward for the CPT. The thing that EUD does well here is that there are various avenues which people can go down in order to be put forward. However, my main point is not the fact that I disagree with the idea of the course, it's that the eligibility criteria need to be standardised to some extent. Otherwise, the rating continues to lack substance across VATSIM. In VATEUD, C3 candidates can use ATC experience coupled with mentoring sessions, staff time or other factors to become eligible and receive a recommendation. In this sense, it is accessible to almost everybody who deserves it and doesn't exclude anybody as there are multiple streams you can go down to qualify. If people do feel that if the course will be mandatory regardless, a compromise with some other standardisation would be appreciated. I would propose the network adopts a policy whereby controllers can get their C3 through multiple avenues. This would include (at minimum): Documented time spent mentoring or Time spent fulfilling staff duties or Time spent contributing to your vACC in other ways (documentation etc.) and A minimum amount of controlling time. Why does C3 need to have these criteria when other ratings don't? The other ratings are all defined by examinable criteria, the C3 is not. In the same way that GCAP defines (in detail) criteria for the other ratings, this advanced rating needs to have some criteria set out in my opinion so that over time, the C3 rating can become a solid, well-recognised and respected rating. Some things are best left up to Divisions to regulate, but for a recognised rating on the network, I do feel that a standard network-wide approach is the best option.
    6 points
  6. You may be increasing access to Air Traffic Control positions for VATSIM members, but this fails to fulfil the second part "whilst maintaining a standard of quality Air Traffic Control service that VATSIM has become known". If controllers are allowed to continue controlling after showing they do not want to maintain the "standard of quality Air Traffic Control service that VATSIM has become known." then we are not upholding the purpose of the document that lets them do that. This is truly all about quantity over quality.
    5 points
  7. We all know that's way too logical of an idea for the BoG.
    5 points
  8. Citation needed. Can the BoG provide data that controllers who have been downgraded leave vs remediate? If not, this is all conjecture and should be thrown out.
    5 points
  9. Great thoughts, Matthew. I wish to uniquely develop them one step further and include my recommendation for network currency requirements. In them, I also build in an incentive for our members to control and accelerate through training while paying respect and courtesy to members that have already put in the time and effort to want to be here. General Requirement: 3-6 hours in 6 months, LOA anytime and perpetually renewable (removal prevention). Required GRP check if a member returns to service after 6 months or upon the end of the LOA. Division controls the hours, but it must fall between a minimum of 3 and maximum of 6. I firmly believe that training hours count as much as online controlling hours, so it can be a mixture of both. Up to 1 year forgiveness after removal (no matter what previous rating was earned); full certs back, GRP check required. This means if you forget to request an LOA, and wind up being removed, you can come back with all of your ratings and certifications, no matter your previous rating level, so long as you attend a GRP check to make sure you're current on procedures and existing standards. Edge Cases: Fast track members who had previously been rated as an S3 and above and pass a GRP check, upon which they get all certs back, anytime after removal. For example, the C1 who leaves for 4 years because of their RW life comes back, passes a GRP check, and is immediately back to business on VATSIM without starting from scratch. But, the S1 or S2 who leaves after 4 years (or anytime after the forgiveness period) needs to start their training over and earn back their certifications (as the procedure is currently after a period of time). This provides an incentive to accelerate their learning, work towards their S3 and beyond, and receive an added benefit for doing so. Not to mention that, as far as ATC coverage goes, an S3 and C1 provide greater exposure for pilots. VATSIM rewards the individuals who put in the time by acknowledging their time is valuable and important. A relaxed rope on higher levels might assist with retention, especially if those members are not 1) forced to always adhere to the 3-6 in 6, and 2) take comfort that they can return whenever life becomes manageable to work traffic again. Additionally, it inherently encourages the beginners to be more active so as to better learn the skills required to work traffic through regular repetition and participation.
    4 points
  10. After all else fails, downgrades are the cleanest and easiest way to establish a baseline of competency upon which a controller can improve. So long as opportunity and help exist to be able to afford a student the opportunity to earn back their proficiency, the educational construct of this network is in tact. It’s when there is an unequal opportunity for success that is present that there’s a breakdown in our system. If after showing the student various ways in which they can get back on the right track they fail to accept their end of the bargain, then their dismissal is not only acceptable but necessary to maintain the integrity of our environment. And keep in mind - it is their will to leave a hobby in which they are not willing to put forth the necessary amount of effort. As far as I am concerned, the exit door shall always and forever remain open for them to waltz back in and give it another try. I welcome those students back with open arms, but I do not bend on my expectations. If the BoG is so focused on just letting people play around with no significant or appropriate consequence for doing it incorrectly, then why publish an appendix worth of baseline standards in the first place? You want to restrict rating changes, create counterproductive currency requirements, and remove simple benchmark assessments? Then I say let’s scrap all standards altogether and just let people play however which they feel like doing so. Just keep in mind, the dedicated staff and population that make this place a worthy environment for a majority of virtual aviators will find the exit door quick, leaving a void that I can only imagine will be filled with inexperienced, dispassionate hobbyists that cater to the “hang” versus an educational environment that introduces a relatable and engaging set of skills.
    4 points
  11. Another example that the policy is based on assumptions, rather than facts. Would love to see some data from this @Matthew Bartels Am I suddenly in a prank show? If someone leaves because of a downgrade, then that's though luck for them, we move on. If they leave because of a downgrade, they never really intent to learn and better themselves. And they only care about a rating. Instead, let's please them by having them keep their rating and confuse everyone else instead by suspending some privileges. In another topic you said it isn't about artificially inflating numbers, but to me, this seems like another example of why it actually is. Just like rating upgrades occur when someone gains new skills, rating downgrades should occur whenever someone loses skills. And if they get better again, they should get their rating back. It's not as if they lost their rating forever. If they decide to get butthurt by a downgrade, then they only care about a rating and not about getting better.
    4 points
  12. I promise you this isn’t about artificially inflating numbers. This is about letting someone who earned a rating come back with no significant hoops they need to jump through to control again. We’re really not interested in mandating an activity requirement. If a division or sub division did not want to have an activity requirement we would fully support that. We’re in essence now allowing activity requirements which really hasn’t been acknowledged by global before. The point is they can’t be excessive and we’re already discussing revisions. Something to the tune of 6 hours within 6 months seems to be gaining traction.
    4 points
  13. Plenty of examples where you rather have a lower quality of controllers to please the few that don't even want to improve themselves. Sorry, but we might actually be better off without those unwilling to train on a network that is focussed on training and education. And again, I get extreme artificial inflation of controller numbers again. Sorry, but this really seems like a prank show to me.
    3 points
  14. To add on to this, Sweatbox scenarios let us target very specific scenarios that are not uncommon on the network but wouldn't reliably appear in a CPT. For example, you can't reliably generate ties between aircraft being handed off live on the network whereas it's trivial to program that into a scenario file. The Sweatbox simulators we use are able to randomize speed variations and different delay/reaction times to by pilots to turn and descent instructions. As an instructor, I also purposefully give bad readbacks, delay executing a turn, or turn the wrong way in order to teach how to handle those on the network. The Sweatbox provides a controlled environment in which we are guaranteed to be able to hit all of the certification requirements.
    3 points
  15. [Citation Needed] So what you are saying is that you would rather have someone control a position they are not competent on, and provide bad service to pilots than force them into retraining. Cool. A lot of the GCAP now makes more sense, and the places where you have stated "the BoG doesn't care to inflate numbers" is complete and utter BS, when you look at this statement and the fact that the BoG doesn't want controllers removed for inactivity. The "educate" part of VATSIMs motto is a joke.
    3 points
  16. These stories depict that in fact there was an opportunity given to connect a pilot to a controller. The opportunity resulted in a unsuccessful application of learned skills (or maybe a failure to apply those skills, or to learn those skills in the first place). Without an accurate rating system which is supposed to directly reflect learned skills, "levels of controlling" are meaningless. If the expectation of an S3 is not generally congruent everywhere, or if there is specific allowed policy permitting an S3 to be really an-S2-who-is-going-through-remedial, but showing as an S3, then the rating itself is ambiguous and becomes meaningless. I think @Matthew Bartels, you're confusing progress in training (i.e., the learning process) as being unidirectional, when in fact it is vital that deficiencies be addressed, which requires taking steps backwards sometimes. There are ways to persuade students who are willing to learn (let me emphasize this: willing to learn) to participate in remedial and understand why their demotion in rating is meant to reflect their set of skills. Of course some will take it personally and make a fit and leave, but we're not in the business of controlling what people's emotions lead them to do.
    3 points
  17. Yes. Alternatively, you could provide some sort of aggregate data like "we've had 10 cases of requests to downgrade ratings in Q1 & Q2. Of those, 2 were disgruntled and left the network (with documentation supporting their actual reason for leaving), 1 was granted a downgrade, 3 were given warnings and are in the process of remedial training with their respective divisions while keeping the rating, and the remaining 4 left the network due to unknown reasons." No data or purely anecdotal data should not be represented in policy decisions nor should they inform any reasoning behind those decisions.
    3 points
  18. Let's start of by saying that I can understand that rating downgrades are not fun for anyone and I can agree that this should be avoided when possible. However, by suspending some or all controlling privileges just makes things immensely confusing. This is basically saying (as I interpret it, otherwise the paragraph is not written clear and concise) "Hey, you're an S3, but missing competences. We don't like downgrading you to S2, so we are removing privilage X, Y and Z that are part of the S3 rating. So technically you're an S2, but you're shown as an S3". See? This only increases confusion to other members. They see an S3, but he's not allowed to do certain things that are tied to the rating. We're making things more difficult than it needs to be. Yeah, a downgrade sucks, but if it's necessary because someone isn't capable of all of his/her current rating competencies and privileges, then maybe they need that downgrade, until they are competent. Don't be silly and remove a few privileges. It doesn't make sense.
    2 points
  19. VATSIM Scandinavia consists of 5 "regions". - Norway, Svalbard - Sweden - Finland - Denmark - Iceland, Faroe islands, Greenland. This is also how our FIR directors and training department is grouped into. These 5 regions primarily have their ATC groups, which will say those who was trained in Norway for example, mainly (and often only) controls in Norway. Even though an controller trained in Norway is allowed to staff as ATC in Sweden, they still have to read up on the local procedures and such before controlling, however we are highly suggesting them to apply for familiarisation training. The new GCAP policy seems to take a vacc as one big group, but this is not always pratical such for example in the following 2 policies: 7.07(a)Any VATSIM Air Traffic Controller who wishes to operate a control position designated as Restricted must complete a familiarization course which shall cover all Restricted Aerodromes and Terminal Facilities within the Division or Sub-Division to earn the endorsement." - This is simply not possible or pratical for us at all. Why should for example a controller who only controls in Finland be forced to familiarise for an Norwegian position? This should be grouped into FIR or countries. 6.05(j)(i) A Visiting Controller Endorsement allows the endorsed controller to control any Minor Airspace within the Division or Sub-Division to which the endorsement applies. - This is close to impossible for us to achieve. We can not offer familiarisation for all 5 FIR groups just because we get a visiting controller. We need this policy to change to one FIR only, this is also how we do it Scandinavia today. For example if we get a visiting in Iceland, they are only allowed to be controlling in Iceland.
    2 points
  20. I'm not sure if I'm the only one, but it seemed the way around for st least couple of months/years now on VS. I mean it's great to put pressure on people to be more newbie friendly, educative and so on, but we need a borderline between "learning environment" and "i will play the way I like it, and I don't care I'm gonna ruin your experience as well".
    2 points
  21. Because these places entirely different skill sets and rely on visitors mainly to provide service on a normal day. Nobody is really a home controller for the Caribbean FSS. If we want these places staffed, we provide incentive by not having it count against their visiting limit.
    2 points
  22. There's a significant difference between "not being perfect" and "not following/standing out to new SOPs", at first. Second, to push back this kind of (rethoric) question, would you prefer to fly under single CTR with controller who is not perfect, rather than full staffed subdivision Area with competent ATCs? Because the later ones are leaving VATSIM.
    2 points
  23. How will this be guaranteed? Put it in the policy, make the policy up for review every x time. I cannot take your word for it.
    2 points
  24. I would like to offer another perspective to this topic, even though it is not directly related. What might be hard for (only) native English speakers to understand is, that all these sub-divisions are usually communities that are speaking the language(s) of their country. So most communication, be it voice or text will be in the native language. We in Germany accepted a long time ago, that German can not be mandated, and we try to provide all relevant information in English as well, switch to English when one of our members not speaking German joins the Teamspeak and mentor in English if the trainee is more comfortable that way. But essentially it is a German community, speaking German 90% of the time. This lead to some problems in the past, as some of our members that were on the older side were proficient enough in English to use it on frequency, but were for example uncomfortable to mentor in English. This is something that is no longer really a problem, as English proficiency is quite high nowadays in Germany, however there might be other countries, where this is not (yet) the case. Overall, I am against a local language requirement, but I can fully understand everyone who sees it as a necessary way to uphold these communities. It might also protect controllers from being isolated in their sub-division.
    2 points
  25. Just another example of how for some reason, we are focusing away from the education part and instead of facilitating and focusing on the dedicated and passionate controllers, mentors and instructors who spend so much time in perfecting their quality of control, and are instead facilitating for the "controllers" who cannot be bothered to learn or train at all and want to leave and are trying to get them to say. For some reason we are facilitating those controllers and making life easier for them. I agree with everyone but Matt here - if someone isn't willing to learn because they can't realise that they need to improve, then that's not a controller in my eyes. Here's the thing, with downgrades, or even just suspensions, the student isn't fully taken away the chance to learn and control again, so in your really rare doomsday scenario, the controller just doesn't want to learn and that's a very bad mindset to have. But if that controller is so set on not wanting to learn how to control properly, tough luck, but in the overall picture, I'd rather lose a controller than to allow them to provide a bad and poor-quality service to pilots.
    2 points
  26. So let me make sure I'm interpreting the VATSIM stance correctly... Bad controlling (aka bad service) + no longer controlling because home facility has removed their privileges + no downgrade = Good! Bad controlling + downgrade with a documented and individual training program + potential for remediation = Bad! It sounds to me like VATSIM just doesn't care about Education and instead would rather not hurt anyone's feelings. Again, VATSIM cares so deeply about controller numbers that they dare give facilities a method to retrain controllers.
    2 points
  27. It's an interesting idea. I would certainly love to see more quality trainers. Here's the few issues that will likely stand in the way: 1) RW Controllers will still need some training. Not on doing the job. But on the technical side of things. How the audio system works. Login rules. That sorta stuff. Could we fast-track? Sure can. And have done for RW controllers. But some training is still needed. 2) Because the top-down hierarchy has existed for so long, everyone understands it and operates by it. Pilots choose where to fly based on it. If we have a select few controllers that are exceptions to it, no one will know until they call the controller that they actually are not performing that role. By then the flight is already moving, but the pilot will not get the expected ATC. So changing the top-down hierarchy is possible, but would be a monumental shift. Not just a 1 sentence policy 'tweak'. I would flip it around and say the top-down system is a great way for RW controllers to learn how their counterparts operate. Centre controllers can really get a feel for what local controlling is like, and vice-versa. Its not the reason I joined, but understanding the other side of the scope has made me a much more effective RW pilot. We welcome everyone to come and teach, but come and learn while you're here too!
    2 points
  28. It matters because your home facility is not just where you live, but where you TRAIN. Your home facility invests dozens and dozens of man-hours in training you. You should be required to return that investment in kind. Yes, most people do treat it that way, but training is such a limited resource. If I spend my time teaching someone, I would like our subdivision to benefit. Yes, go visit elsewhere and learn, but don't forget who taught you most of what you learned about controlling. I always thought the 50/50 rule was perfectly fair and reasonable. If you want to spend more time controlling elsewhere, transfer there.
    2 points
  29. Phil, I personally am not against solos and I think solos are quite crucial, at least in all of the places where I have mentored. I will never, ever be against solos. However, I also know that different places (such as ZBW) have different training procedures and I can understand that if a training program is structured in a way which does not include solos, it clearly works best for that sub-division. I'm a visiting controller at ZBW and I know that Boston has some really really great controllers, so those controllers must have gone through a really strong training program. What I am saying is, I don't want sub-divisions to be forced to use something that conflicts with their current training system. That's why I said that these things should be regulated on a sub-divisional level and if this is abused too far, then this should be dealt with appropriately on a divisional or regional level. But I just think it would be very toxic if divisions were forced to do things one way, when something worked just fine for them before. David
    1 point
  30. I'm just quoting you Ryan because you're the one who said it most recently, but I would agree with one exception. Memory is sort of like muscle mass. You can lose it slowly, but it also comes back quickly with a little training once you've had a certain level of strength in the past. There seems to be a perception that people's ratings or endorsements should be taken away after a certain length of time has elapsed. I'm not in favor of that as it creates a burden on the controller and training departments to recertify these individuals. In most aviation (and non-aviation) professions, the remedy for an absence from working in the profession is not to completely recertify them, but to provide a small bit of currency training to get the person back to proficiency. It's why the FAA concepts of a flight review and instrument proficiency check exist. Ditto for recurrent training for airline pilots. Pilots don't lose their pilot certifications or endorsements when they don't fly enough, they just lose the right to exercise the privileges granted until they can demonstrate they have the ability to do so again. From a VATSIM perspective, I would say that controllers who let currency lapse should not be stripped of any ratings or endorsements, but rather just required to do live training with a mentor or instructor who grants them their controlling privileges back when they demonstrate they have the required proficiency again. For someone who has only been gone a year or two this probably would take no more than a couple hours. If someone has been gone for ten years, it would (and should) obviously take quite a bit more time. This leaves the timeframe up to the discretion of the mentor/instructor involved so that the training can be as short or long as necessary to get the individual up to speed.
    1 point
  31. Sometimes you just have to adapt to the VATSIMism of things. No matter what, we're still using a radar, even if Euroscope is displaying something differently, it's still a radar client and worded like that.
    1 point
  32. Yes, ZBW does not announce OTS's as other sub-divisions may. It puts an unnecessary stress on the controller that is not present during day to day controlling. The thing that changes between sessions is the controllers self review based on feedback in training reports. I do not believe in CPT's. The only time I think on the network training should be used is during high traffic periods or during center training which is often too intense for an instructor to run a session in the sweatbox. You can not test a student on the network with random traffic that is often minimal the same way that a mentor can test a student in sweatbox scenarios that are engineered to test the students full capacity. While a CPT may be good in other divisions where certification levels differ than in VATUSA, some ARTCC's in VATUSA including ZBW we certify students to a new rating such as the S2 at a Class C/minor Airport such as Portland (KPWM). Signoff on the network in the form of a CPT would not provide the student with a true practical test that can be offered in a sweatbox environment which we have used to certify hundreds of students over the last few years.
    1 point
  33. @Matthew Bartels that’s 3 cases of controllers not willing to learn and educate. Which is a part of VATSIM’s slogan. Now, those are a few negative examples. But - how many examples have you seen of controllers being put in the same thing ultimatum but who are actually willing to learn and improve the skills? I can guarantee you that there are more than not. Everything else’s that needs to be said has already been said - VATSIM has always stood out because VATSIM’s mindset has always been quality>quantity. Trying to change that isn’t gonna make us a any better than all of those other networks. But just like with most other things, I’ve already said that loads of times and it truly saddens me that this is the way the network wants to move from now on.
    1 point
  34. I can understand the reluctance to downgrade ratings. Getting them is not always easy, and in some places requires waiting for a long (long!) time. Someone who waits 9 months for their S2, and then sees it gone, might decide not to put themselves through another 9 months of waiting. Everyone loses that way. The controller may not be competent at the time, but they once were (otherwise they would not have gotten the rating). And lost skills can be retaught. I would much rather see an easy way for a controller rating to be frozen, if valid reasons are provided by the both sub-divisions Director and Training Director to either the Regions VP, or Regions Training Director. A quick, simple, and painless way to freeze the rating if sufficient reasons exist. That way the controller would still have their rating, however would need to go through a few training sessions to remedy whatever the sub-divisions thinks is lacking. Once the Training Director considers the controller to be again up to par they may request the rating to be unfrozen. It is less drastic and aggressive then a complete rating removal, the end result is the same (the controller is no longer controlling a position at which they're not up to minimum standard), and it is less taxing on the Training Departments, as a fresh-up training should definitely be faster then doing the rating again from scratch.
    1 point
  35. The title and content of this forum thread shows that this ^ topic is not what we're concerned with here.
    1 point
  36. No way... And I learnt that after 12 years on the vatsim. 😂
    1 point
  37. Does VATSIM care about Education or not? I don't want to chase people off the network at all. I would much rather sit down with the controller and my division training director and whoever else and come up with an individual training plan to get the controller back up to speed. In fact, I've done it before! At what point, however, does it become the responsibility of the controller to meet us halfway? Just like the ARTCC/FIR has a responsibility to ensure they are providing quality service and to train the controller, the controller is responsible for staying up to date with policy changes and skills. Also, as I've said for years - we're here to be a pretend air traffic controller, why would anyone pretend to do a bad job? If people are not meeting the standard, there 100% needs to be a correction. Again, it's not because we want to chase them off the network. It's because we care about the quality of service we are providing. I don't know if anyone else here is a real world pilot, or has a real world experience, but when a controller is obviously unfamiliar with the procedures or the current version of the 7110.65 (or whatever the appropriate controlling order is), it kills any sense of immersion that I'm getting from the network.
    1 point
  38. Matt BartelsVP: Marketing & Communication Because its his job role?
    1 point
  39. Because I signed up for it. If we can actually get some good out of this process and make positive changes for the network, then it’s worth the years off my life 🙂
    1 point
  40. As a real world controller, I would hope that we could expand this type of online training to events. There could be a great deal of valuable training during events, or even, create a "Training Event", (staffing permitting) .
    1 point
  41. However, a problem appears when this controller transfers or visits a different facility. When my facility receives a controller with an S1 rating, I will have no way to tell whether they were issued it "for training purposes only", or if they earned the actual certification. This is why I'd love to see the practice of granting an S1 rating to a non-certified trainee stop... It adds pointless ambiguity when an S1 shows up on my doorstep whether they're a "real" or "fake" S1. I would love for GCAP 7.05(c) to be removed, in order to establish consistency for the S1 rating. Granting an S1 should either: - "imply no competencies" (as it does in currently active policy), or - "imply a certification for minor ground" (as the draft GCAP does). But allowing it to sometimes mean one and sometimes mean the other is pointless convolution of something that should be simple.
    1 point
  42. And everything here seems to imply that sub-division staff just wants to remove people from their rosters. That they are waiting to a year and one day to finally remove someone. Obviously I can't speak to everyone, but it would be weird if that was the case somewhere. We put training resources in our students, we would want them to be active. The minimum activity requirement is a big stick we can use if someone really lacks the competence and isn't actively trying to get better. And barely getting online doesn't help that. Say there's a requirement of two hours a month. It's not like we immediately mark someone as inactive if they haven't met the minimum requirement. You're correct, life gets in the way and as we are all human, we understand that. I've said it before, it's a bit of a harsh opinion, but really straight to the point: if you're only for one hour in a year, you should really find a different hobby. Obviously no offense intended to anyone for that.
    1 point
  43. I think Matt has valid points, sometimes life happens and you can't control. I don't think that means you should lose all of your progress and ratings and have to go through more training to get back at it. I do also think there needs to be a consistent universal activity requirement, although I think that should be left to the Divisions to set and not the BoG. I don't think having controllers who don't control more than once or twice a year sit on a roster is helpful, if we are being honest somebody like that is not active. A roster should be an accurate depiction of active controllers in the Division/Sub-Division. If I am being frank that smells like the BoG trying to artificially inflate activity numbers. I think the better move here is to make it so that if you get removed there is an easy, accelerated path back that takes minimal effort. While I was the ATM at ZOA the policy was that if you left the facility and came back within 6 months you got everything back (including major certifications) no questions asked. If you left for greater than 6 months but less than 12 months you would get everything back (including major certifications) after you completed a recurrent CBT and/or written exam. Beyond 12 months you would need to do training again for the major certifications. I feel something along these lines, with the Division setting a reasonable activity requirement, is likely a more agreeable approach somewhere in the middle of this discussion.
    1 point
  44. These two sections are complete non-starters. Not all divisions and sub-divisions are the same, and nor are their training departments. We've had to refer more than a few controllers back to their home facilities this year due to not meeting current GRP standards. Complex airspace and airports with detailed and complicated SOPs and letters of agreement exist even in the "minor" realm, and poor controlling at that level creates misery for controllers working airspace above them and further bad experiences for pilots as they are issued in-air reroutes, vectors, or otherwise delayed. This is a global policy, and reaching down this far not only ignores, but actively harms divisions and sub-divisions that could be entire platforms in their own right.
    1 point
  45. And how would I go about learning parallel runway operations in a country that doesn't have an airport with parallel runways? There are a few specific procedures that need to be taken into account when controlling parallel runways, it isn't just saying 03L and 03R instead of only saying 03. And then there are airports where you can have aircraft approaching in parallel without any sort of restriction, as the runways are far enough away from each other to allow it, whilst other airports have them too close to each other, so specific separation on final is needed. If a sub-division has none of these airports, why would they train their controllers on how to control them? It isn't something they're going to be needing. If I want to make pasta for dinner I don't also look for a steak recipe just because my neighbour is cooking a steak.
    1 point
  46. Matt, I think the issue here is the grumpy cat display picture. If you get a happy cat picture instead we might not argue this point anymore 😄
    1 point
  47. You know what's a great way to get people on position? Having an activity requirement that is more strict than one hour a year.
    1 point
  48. I'm curious how your military restriction fits within the current GRP?
    1 point
  49. Ok, thanks for the information. I personally would not include this piece of information in the VFR-part of my flightplan.
    1 point
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