DJI Mavic, Air and Mini Drones
Friendly, Helpful & Knowledgeable Community
Join Us Now

Drone Program In Highschool

BRDVPRA

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 25, 2018
Messages
64
Reactions
21
Hey All,
I have been approached by a Highschool that wants to setup a Drone Education Program AND use the drone to film local activities for money that would go back to their STEAM Program. I have a few questions and looking for ideas on how to build the architecture for such a program.
1. I am not aware of any exemptions for schools?
2. I assume the drone could be flown for free and a donation to the club could be asked for, but I don't think that is teaching the kids the right approach.
3. I assume a Teacher could be the Remote Pilot In Command and the students 16 years and older could fly under their direct supervision as long as the teacher is standing close enough to take control. With highschoolers this could be more liability, but I would think that could be significantly mitigated with Flight Planning.

Please let me know what else i'm not thinking of here! Thanks in advance!
 
1) There are some vague exemptions for "Education Institutions" but they mostly deal with Airspace etc. Honestly, I'd have to do some research to see if they are still valid in today's regulations.

2) Drone flown for free? I'm not following the thought processes here. Please elaborate some more :)

3) The Teacher would be the RPIC and he/she would have to be co-located so they could take control of the aircraft without hesitation if needed. It's important to note that the RPIC can only "teach/observe" a single UAS/student at a time. Also, the RPIC is fully responsible for any incidents etc as they are in essence "flying under your license".
 
  • Like
Reactions: maggior
1) There are some vague exemptions for "Education Institutions" but they mostly deal with Airspace etc. Honestly, I'd have to do some research to see if they are still valid in today's regulations.

2) Drone flown for free? I'm not following the thought processes here. Please elaborate some more :)

3) The Teacher would be the RPIC and he/she would have to be co-located so they could take control of the aircraft without hesitation if needed. It's important to note that the RPIC can only "teach/observe" a single UAS/student at a time. Also, the RPIC is fully responsible for any incidents etc as they are in essence "flying under your license".
I was just saying you could separate the drone flight/film from any type of payment, but as stated that is not the right message to the kids. Thanks for your input!
 
I was just saying you could separate the drone flight/film from any type of payment, but as stated that is not the right message to the kids. Thanks for your input!

Just know that even w/o payment this is 100% a Part 107 situation.
 
I have been approached by a Highschool that wants to setup a Drone Education Program
As @BigAl07 has already written, the instructor, or anyone else involved in the program must be a Licensed Part 107 Pilot. That is an FAA rule/regulation and I'll let you do all the Googling on that subject or you can use our extensive web site's Search feature of our extensive database of messages…

A Part 107 Licensed Pilot will have to be present and possible classified as the Pilot In Charge (PIC) when there is any drone flying. That means the PIC must either be piloting the drone or a non-licensed pilot be directly supervised by a remote PIC and the remote PIC has the ability to immediately take direct control of the drone even if they are flying is a FAA-Recognized Identification Areas (FRIAs).

The reason for such tight control on who can fly a drone and who is in charge and ultimately responsible will be mostly directed by the insurance coverage that the school will be required to carry.

So do not just banter this around without getting the school systems insurance carrier involved. If the locality is self-insured, they will still need to be aware of the potential hazards of some student flying a drone into another person and the propellers "slapping the smile off their face…" or the potential for property damage…

Sorry, to be a "Buzz-kill" but it may be easier to build a rifle range at the school…
 
Unless it is known where the OP is, it might be an idea to check where they are before suggesting requirements in terms of 'licenses' etc. etc. .

One thing I would suggest is that third party insurance would be a MUST irrespective of whether or not it was a legal requirement.
Signed disclaimers from parents/guardians, the school and possibly the pupils regarding both injury AND, for in school shots, privacy. With signed statements on official school paper, for each in school session, that either no imagery was shot or that it was wiped at the end of the session?
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: okw
Some other thoughts, for in school flights prop guards, spherical?
If there is any thought of pupils flying the drone then using drones that allow primary and secondary controllers with the pupil ALWAYS being given the secondary? That's a bit counter intuitive since it probably means using a heavier drone with more dangerous prop-blades but it would mean that the PIC can always over rider the pupil's commands and restricts the pupils access to menus.
I'd have to check whether or not the secondary (M2P/Z) can change the drone's flight mode.
 
Last edited:
A friend of mine teaches a drone photography class at his High School. I know several high schools in Washington state are implementing drones in their STEM curriculum. They are building from scratch, programming, etc. I read recently that schools in the eastern, agricultural part of the state, are introducing drone classes emphasizing careers utilizing drone technology, especially as it relates to farming.
 
It's amazing of all the bull crap that BRDVPRA has to go thru just to teach some kids a new learning experience.
Everyone is scared of what could happen in the worst scenario and how to protect oneself if the worst does happens.
What ever happened to the time when you could carry a rifle on a school bus (and put it behind the bus driver) to attend rifle shooting class in the afternoon?
May God help us all.

I wish Mr. BRDVPRA all the luck in the world, good luck sir!
Just my .02
 
I set up an aviation program late 2017 for a high-school in Chicago for aviation. The curriculum was based on students getting educated to pass the FAA knowledge exam. I also included flight training as option. The same can be applied to Drone training with final exam grade being based on resultant score of part 107 exam. Whats cool, (I thought was unusual), is that UAS license does not require any practicle experince to be a certified drone pilot, and each student would be an official drone pilot once they passed the exam. 15 year Old making 50.00 an hour is way better than minimum wage.
As far as flying, training has exemptions to part 107 until you use video to furtherance business. In this case, if you are earning money to supplement the program you fall smack dab in the middle of having to be part 107 compliant. However, 1-1 operator and UAS remote pilot can fly these missions together and it's legal. You can get group insurance for the cause, but expect significant push back from school admin if your going out to do commercial work vs flying in the schools football stadium. Lastly, you need a champion teacher who is willing to raise their hand to be the part 107 guy. If not the are state regulation to get you in a position where you can teach it as an educator. Too much to list. I hope that helps. Teaching kids to fly is a noble endeavor and one that's a "real" activity that seems to get thier attention over thier virtual experiences.
 
I’ve studied in one, started a couple college programs, and consulted on a couple others.

All instructors of air operations *must* be current Pt. 107. The school’s insurer may have additional requirements. School administration needs to reach out to them.

Education is a specific exemption area of Pt. 107. With the TRUST certificate in hand, students may fly under the 44809 exemption’s provisions for education… but that doesn’t apply to instructors.

As noted previously, there can be no form of compensation or consideration under the rec/edu exemption. The students can’t fly for a donation to the STEM/STEAM program.

Students can also fly as a Person Manipulating the Controls under the direct supervision of a Pt. 107 remote pilot. However, with this approach only one drone can be in the air per Pt. 107 pilot.

Many (most?) high school STEM/STEAM programs focus on building drones using racing/fpv parts and kits.

My program’s learn-to-fly drones are DJI/RYZE Tello, we fly indoors in the gym. FAA regs don’t apply in the gym.

There is so much more than can be covered in a forum post. Please reach out to me via PM with any specific questions.
 
I set up an aviation program late 2017 for a high-school in Chicago for aviation. The curriculum was based on students getting educated to pass the FAA knowledge exam. I also included flight training as option. The same can be applied to Drone training with final exam grade being based on resultant score of part 107 exam. Whats cool, (I thought was unusual), is that UAS license does not require any practicle experince to be a certified drone pilot, and each student would be an official drone pilot once they passed the exam. 15 year Old making 50.00 an hour is way better than minimum wage.
As far as flying, training has exemptions to part 107 until you use video to furtherance business. In this case, if you are earning money to supplement the program you fall smack dab in the middle of having to be part 107 compliant. However, 1-1 operator and UAS remote pilot can fly these missions together and it's legal. You can get group insurance for the cause, but expect significant push back from school admin if your going out to do commercial work vs flying in the schools football stadium. Lastly, you need a champion teacher who is willing to raise their hand to be the part 107 guy. If not the are state regulation to get you in a position where you can teach it as an educator. Too much to list. I hope that helps. Teaching kids to fly is a noble endeavor and one that's a "real" activity that seems to get thier attention over thier virtual experiences.
My friend that teaches is a professional photographer with his part 107, and has taught HS photography for decades. He is limited to flights within the confines of the football field and school campus when teaching. He doesn't prep students for part 107, his focus is on recreational flying and photography only.
 
  • Like
Reactions: akdrone
Unless it is known where the OP is, it might be an idea to check where they are before suggesting requirements in terms of 'licenses' etc. etc. .

One thing I would suggest is that third party insurance would be a MUST irrespective of whether or not it was a legal requirement.
Signed disclaimers from parents/guardians, the school and possibly the pupils regarding both injury AND, for in school shots, privacy with signed statements on official school paper, for each session, that either no imagery was shot or that it was wiped at the end of the session?


For the record, the OP is in the USA and falls under FAA rules for Part 107 :)
 
  • Like
Reactions: okw
The only way to make this work is to start with a program to get kids their Part 107. After that they could take part in a class and fly drones.

That's not correct. The "Student" is not required to be Part 107 to get instruction but the instructor (or someone on site) must be Part 107. Learning to fly UAS does not require Part 107.

I've "taught" UAS to many students (class age and well out of class). The "students" do not need to have Part 107 to get instruction. We've taught several 5-day Part 107 courses (as part of Emergency Services) and none of the students have Part 107 although this is a Part 107 prep course and the goal is to have them ready to go and take their Part 107 upon successfully completely the 5 day course.
 
It is not illegal to fly in controlled airspace with ATC clearance under part 107. LAANC gives you this clearance. 249grams allows you to fly under recreational exemption with out registration. How ever if you are going to work that furtherance business, you will need to fly under part 107 and be subject to same regulations as a drones that wiegh up to 55lb. The only place to avoid FAA 107 regulation is indoors for now.
A non licensed student can fly under supervision of remote part 107 pilot. There are no requirement from FAA to call yourself an instructor so be careful out there. You can find instructors that are also AIG or CFI FAA certified.
 
Hey All,
I have been approached by a Highschool that wants to setup a Drone Education Program AND use the drone to film local activities for money that would go back to their STEAM Program. I have a few questions and looking for ideas on how to build the architecture for such a program.
1. I am not aware of any exemptions for schools?
2. I assume the drone could be flown for free and a donation to the club could be asked for, but I don't think that is teaching the kids the right approach.
3. I assume a Teacher could be the Remote Pilot In Command and the students 16 years and older could fly under their direct supervision as long as the teacher is standing close enough to take control. With highschoolers this could be more liability, but I would think that could be significantly mitigated with Flight Planning.

Please let me know what else i'm not thinking of here! Thanks in advance!
COdrone in California. Educational drones, sub 250g, you can fly indoors, learn coding, etc. Sets and materials for education, a d when flown indoors 100% exempt from drone regulations. Achoops have gyms and large classrooms to fly in.
 
My friend that teaches is a professional photographer with his part 107, and has taught HS photography for decades. He is limited to flights within the confines of the football field and school campus when teaching. He doesn't prep students for part 107, his focus is on recreational flying and photography only.
If the students are flying they are required to have their Part 107. Flying for the purpose of taking a class would not be considered simply for fun by the FAA, I'm quite confident on that point. You can't even fly to check out your home's gutters let alone fly as part of a class without a Part 107.
 
  • Wow
Reactions: Torque
If the students are flying they are required to have their Part 107. Flying for the purpose of taking a class would not be considered simply for fun by the FAA, I'm quite confident on that point. You can't even fly to check out your home's gutters let alone fly as part of a class without a Part 107.
I'd be very surprised if that was the case. No pilot of a manned aircraft is expected to be licenced before undergoing flight school. It doesn't make any sense that a drone student pilot would need a licence prior to undergoing drone school.
 
If the students are flying they are required to have their Part 107. Flying for the purpose of taking a class would not be considered simply for fun by the FAA, I'm quite confident on that point. You can't even fly to check out your home's gutters let alone fly as part of a class without a Part 107.
Clarification: Flying legally in controlled airspace. The Pilot "operator" not PIC does not have to have to have any license as long as PIC can comply with 107.12 part 2
  1. No person may operate a small unmanned aircraft in Class B, Class C, or Class D airspace, or within the lateral boundaries of the surface area of Class E airspace designated for an airport unless that person has prior authorization from Air Traffic Control (ATC). Proponents requesting to operate under 14 CFR Part 107.41 within these classes of airspace must request an authorization through either the Low Altitude Authorization and Notification Capability (LAANC) or DroneZone.
  2. LAANC Operations: https://faa.gov/go/laanc.
  3. DroneZone: https://faadronezone.faa.gov/.

§ 107.12 Requirement for a remote pilot certificate with a small UAS rating.​


(a) Except as provided in paragraph (c) of this section, no person may manipulate the flight controls of a small unmanned aircraft system unless:
(1) That person has a remote pilot certificate with a small UAS rating issued pursuant to subpart C of this part and satisfies the requirements of § 107.65; or
(2) That person is under the direct supervision of a remote pilot in command and the remote pilot in command has the ability to immediately take direct control of the flight of the small unmanned aircraft.
 
  • Like
Reactions: rjwmorrell
Lycus Tech Mavic Air 3 Case

DJI Drone Deals

New Threads

Forum statistics

Threads
130,081
Messages
1,549,087
Members
159,133
Latest member
1prophead