NOTICE

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION

N 8900.438

 

National Policy

Effective Date: 10/11/17

 

 

Cancellation Date: 10/11/18

 

SUBJ:

New and Updated Policy Regarding Aircraft Dispatcher Certification, Including Approval and Oversight of FAA-Approved Aircraft Dispatcher Certification Courses and the Appointment and Management of Designated Aircraft Dispatcher Examiners (DADE)

1.    Purpose of This Notice. This notice announces both new and revised national policy and standards related to the certification of Aircraft Dispatchers, the approval and management of Aircraft Dispatcher Certification Courses, and the appointment and management of Designated Aircraft Dispatcher Examiners (DADE).

a.    Aircraft Dispatcher Certification. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has updated the policy and guidelines regarding Aircraft Dispatcher Certification and the administration of the Aircraft Dispatcher Practical Test. The revised policy is located in FAA Order 8900.1, Volume 5, Chapter 5, Section 10, Part 65 Aircraft Dispatcher Certification.

b.    FAA-Approved Aircraft Dispatcher Certification Courses. The FAA has established new national policy related to the approval and management of Aircraft Dispatcher Certification Courses, approved by the FAA in accordance with Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 65 subpart C. The policy is now contained in Order 8900.1, Volume 3, Chapter 63, FAA-Approved Aircraft Dispatcher Certification Courses. There is also an accompanying advisory circular (AC), which is AC 65-34, FAA-Approved Aircraft Dispatcher Certification Courses.

c.    Appointment and Management of DADEs. The FAA has updated the national policy and guidelines related to the appointment and management of DADEs. The policy is contained in Order 8900.1, Volume 13, Chapter 3, Designated Aircraft Dispatcher Examiner.

2.    Audience. The primary audience for this notice is FAA Flight Standards offices, aviation safety inspectors (ASI), and DADEs responsible for tasks related to the certification of aircraft dispatchers; this includes issuing airman certificates, approving and managing FAA-approved Aircraft Dispatcher Certification Courses, and appointing and managing DADEs. The secondary audience includes all Flight Standards divisions, branches, and offices.

3.    Where You Can Find This Notice. You can find this notice on the MyFAA employee website at https://employees.faa.gov/tools_resources/orders_notices. Inspectors can access this notice through the Flight Standards Information Management System (FSIMS) at http://fsims.avs.faa.gov. Operators can find this notice on the FAA’s website at http://fsims.faa.gov. This notice is available to the public at http://www.faa.gov/regulations_policies/orders_notices.

4.    Cancellation. This notice cancels Notice N 8900.409, Approval and Oversight of FAA-Approved Aircraft Dispatcher Certification Courses, dated March 20, 2017.

5.    Background.

a.    Policy Related to DADEs—Public Docket Number FAA-2011-1149. On November 8, 2011, the FAA announced the availability of a proposed revision to policy contained in Order 8900.1 regarding the qualification, authority, and limitations of DADEs. The announcement was posted in the Federal Register (FR) and the associated draft policy documents were posted in public docket number FAA-2011-1149. At that time, the public was provided with a total of 90 days (November 8, 2011–February 8, 2012) in which to provide comment to the proposed revision. On December 29, 2014, after careful consideration of the comments submitted by the public, the FAA provided a draft of the DADE policy revision, along with a table containing the FAA’s disposition of public comments. These documents were also provided in the docket. The FAA held actual publication of the revised DADE policy until such time as it could be published simultaneously with the policy related to Aircraft Dispatcher Certification Courses. The FAA felt this action was appropriate for consistency and standardization, because the two sets of policy are interrelated.

b.    Policy Related to the Approval and Management of Aircraft Dispatcher Certification Courses—Public Docket Number FAA-2014-0820. On October 22, 2014, the FAA announced the availability of a proposed new chapter of Order 8900.1 and a proposed new AC related to Aircraft Dispatcher Certification Courses. The announcement was posted in the FR. The draft Order 8900.1 policy and AC were made available to the public for comment in public docket number FAA-2014-0820. The new chapter in Order 8900.1 (Chapter 63 of Volume 3) establishes policy not previously addressed in FAA orders or ACs. The associated AC, which was titled “65-DADE” while in draft, provides standards and guidelines applicable to current and potential operators of an FAA-approved Aircraft Dispatcher Certification Course. The total comment period provided to the public, including an extension, was 4 months (October 22, 2014–February 22, 2015). The FAA has carefully considered all of the comments submitted by the public, and incorporated those considered to be appropriate. A copy of the FAA’s disposition of comments is now available in the docket.

6.    Effective Date of the Policy Related to DADEs.

a.    Existing DADEs. The policy related to DADEs becomes effective at the DADE’s next renewal or on October 11, 2018, whichever is later.

b.    Future DADEs. The policy related to DADEs is effective immediately for any DADE who will be newly appointed after the publication date of this notice.

7.    Effective Date of Standards and Guidelines for Aircraft Dispatcher Certification Courses.

a.    New Course Applicants. For applicants seeking original FAA approval of a new Aircraft Dispatcher Certification Course, the standards set forth in the current edition of AC 65-34 are effective immediately.

b.    Existing Courses. FAA-approved Aircraft Dispatcher Certification Courses that are currently in existence and operating are being provided with a transition period during which a course operator can make the changes necessary to meet the standards of the current edition of AC 65-34.

(1)    Course as Currently Approved. For existing Aircraft Dispatcher Certification Courses that have already received FAA approval as of the publication of the current edition of AC 65-34, the standards contained therein are effective on the date of the next renewal of FAA approval or on October 31, 2019, whichever is later, provided there are no changes made to the training course outline (TCO), equipment, or facilities during this transition period.
(2)    Revisions or Changes to an Approved Course. A revision to an existing course approval in accordance with part 65, § 65.63(d) (e.g., revising the TCO, adding or changing equipment, adding or changing a training facility, etc.) is subject to the standards contained in the current edition of AC 65-34, effective immediately. In addition, changes that are included as part of a course renewal that occurs any time after the publication of the AC are immediately subject to the standards contained therein.

8.    Action.

a.    Notify Course Operators and DADEs. As soon as possible, Dispatch Course Program Managers (DCPM) and managing specialists will inform each Aircraft Dispatcher Certification Course operator and DADE for whom they have oversight responsibility of the contents of this notice. Either provide a physical copy of the notice or direct each course operator and/or DADE on how to access the notice via the public FSIMS website (http://fsims.faa.gov).

b.    DCPMs of Existing Aircraft Dispatcher Certification Courses. As soon as possible, DCPMs of existing Aircraft Dispatcher Certification Courses will communicate with each course operator and affirm that the operator understands its responsibility as an entity regulated by the FAA, which is to operate in accordance with the regulations and standards set forth by the FAA. DCPMs will explain the effective dates of the new standards, and ultimately verify that each course is being operated consistent with those standards, within the timeframe specified in paragraph 7.

c.    Managing Office Managers and Specialists of Existing DADEs Issue a New Letter of Authority (LOA). The managing specialist of an existing DADE will prepare a new LOA for each existing DADE. The managing office manager, or his/her delegate, will sign the LOA. This action is required at the DADE’s next renewal or by October 11, 2018, whichever is later. Order 8900.1, Volume 13, Chapter 3, Section 1, Initial Appointment and Renewal of a Designated Aircraft Dispatcher Examiner, contains an updated sample of an LOA for a DADE. Managing specialists are expected to use the sample provided as a boilerplate. It is highly recommended that managing specialists be proactive in working with their DADEs early on to ensure compliance.

d.    Approving Offices of Aircraft Dispatcher Certification Courses. Effective immediately, the office manager of a Flight Standards office that currently holds the approval of an Aircraft Dispatcher Certification Course must assign the appropriate technical resource to be the DCPM who approves (original approval and renewal of approval) and manages the course, which includes conducting oversight. The intent of this policy is that the approving office will also be responsible for course management through oversight, and the DCPM is the individual responsible for carrying out those duties. The approving office manager is the individual with the authority to sign official correspondence with the course operator. The primary policy governing the appropriate technical resources to be assigned as the DCPM is located in Order 8900.1, Volume 3, Chapter 63, Section 2, Federal Aviation Administration Resources and Assignment of Inspectors.

(1)    Requirement for Appropriate Technical Resource Introduced in N 8900.409. Flight Standards introduced the policy regarding the appropriate technical resources to be assigned as the DCPM in N 8900.409, which was published on March 20, 2017.
(2)    Flight Standards Offices that Lack the Appropriate Technical Resources to Approve and Manage a Course. Flight Standards offices that currently hold a course approval but do not have the appropriate technical resources to manage the course have 6 calendar-months from the date of this notice to transfer the course approval to another Flight Standards office that has the appropriate technical resources to assign as the DCPM. This is required unless the current Flight Standards office is able to obtain the appropriate technical resource through direct assignment to the office within this 6 calendar-month timeframe.

9.    Disposition. The information contained in this notice has been incorporated into Order 8900.1. Direct questions or comments concerning this notice to the Air Transportation Division (AFS-200) at 202-267-8166.

ORIGINAL SIGNED by

/s/ Michael Zenkovich

Deputy Executive Director, Flight Standards Service