The Flight Academy’s Summer Camp is the foundation of the Flight Academy experience. Usually held in June, during the school year’s Summer break, this is where most of the intense ground school, book work, and presentations are done before flying in a plane with a certified aircraft pilot to experience the joy of flying. As mentioned in the Code of Conduct, The General Daniel “Chappie” James Flight Academy, and its’ Summer Camp has an outstanding reputation both inside and outside of the Pensacola Community. We have trained Campers from all across the United States and the Caribbean. In order to provide this unique, educational experience to as many students as possible in a fair and equitable way, we have established certain attendance policies that we must enforce.
All students can attend the Summer Camp as a Camper “One Time Only.” Going through the Summer Camp more than once as a Camper is not allowed. Students may attend the Camp again as a “Mentor” or “Staff Member” if selected to this higher position, vetted, and trained.
The age of the students for the Summer Camp will be 13 to 17 years of age during the year of the Camp. Allowances for younger students will be considered by the Director of Operations and Educations due to the student’s maturity and scholastic adaptation of the material to be presented.
Once a student is selected as a Camper, he or she will follow, and be bound to the Flight Academy’s Code of Conduct, and subject to the Disciplinary Policy as adapted by the Academy. Without question, Safety is our paramount goal of the Academy, therefore Campers will strive to control their behavior and actions to ensure good order and discipline while having fun and learning new concepts.
In order to give all students a chance to experience this opportunity of the Summer Camp, the Flight Academy has the right to choose, or not choose any student without cause or explanation. The final selection authority will be the Director of Operations and Education and/ or the President of the Flight Academy.
For the flight academy to function properly and execute its’ mission, it is essential that order is maintained and proper behavior is demonstrated.
The Director of Operations and Education is tasked by the President with ensuring that students individually and collectively meet the required standards. Although this area is the director’s assigned responsibility, the assistance of all staff members is required.
Any staff member, volunteer or mentor may point out and correct observed minor student behavioral infractions such as momentary inattentiveness or talking in class. If the infractions are continually repeated or the student response is inappropriate, individual counseling away from the class or team may be necessary. Counseling shall be performed only by adult staff or volunteers. All instances of counseling shall be brought to the attention of the Director at the appropriate time.
Any staff member, volunteer or mentor may point out violations of the interaction policy. Corrective action or intervention however, shall be performed by adult staff only. Such instances shall immediately be brought to the attention of the Director who will then inform the President.
In the event that student behavioral infractions require parental or guardian notification, this shall be performed by the Director. If in the Director’s opinion a meeting with a parent or guardian is necessary, the Director may choose to have the staff member(s) who witnessed the offending behavior present.
The Director has several tools available to ensure that student behavior is at the appropriate level. There may be instances where the Director determines that disciplinary action is warranted such as assigning a research project, making a short presentation or requiring an apology to be made.
The Director may decide that in certain instances student behavior has risen to a level that one of the two most serious forms of disciplinary action is warranted : Suspension or Disenrollment. Suspension is for a limited time period (morning or afternoon session) or a particular event (field trip). Suspension is intended to be corrective and allows the student to rejoin the academy. Disenrollment is irrevocable and results in immediate separation from all academy activities. Decisions on suspension or disenrollment require the concurrence of the President and an in person meeting with the parent or guardian. The President and Director shall be at the meeting.
Each mentor applicant must complete a screening process. At a minimum, the following screening procedures are required for each applicant. Staff will ensure that applicants complete the minimum screening requirements listed below:
Mentor screening requirements;
• Must attend an initial orientation session.
• Complete a written application.
• Director of Operations will ensure the following background check is completed prior to mentor interfacing with students: Escambia County Sheriff Background check.
• If applicable, mentor’s driving record will be verified and a copy of his/her current auto insurance coverage be presented to the Director of Operations prior to transporting students.
• Mentor must complete a personal interview with the Director of Operations and Education or they’re designee.
The decision to accept an applicant as a mentor will be based on a final assessment by the Director of Operations and Education.
Prospective mentors are expected to meet all eligibility criteria. Extenuating circumstances may be reviewed at the discretion of the Director of Operations and Education, and acceptance may then be allowed with written approval of the Board of Directors.
Interaction between staff and students is at the heart of what we do. Working with young men and women in educational (classroom, labs field trips etc.) and non educational (lunch) environments is challenging. We must foster an atmosphere that is conducive to learning and respectful of authority. The parents and guardians of our students place great trust in us for their safety and wellbeing. Constant vigilance is required and we can never let our guard down. Consequently, we must also remember that our students are teenagers and will at times act as young people do.
All conversations and exchanges between staff/student, staff/staff and student/student shall be courteous and at the appropriate tone and level for the particular setting. For example, the tone and demeanor required in an aerodynamics presentation in the flight academy classroom will be different than that required on a flight line in the vicinity of operating aircraft. The staff member or instructor making a presentation or conducting an event is in charge and must maintain control. Profanity, use of derogatory terms, verbal intimidation, harassment and threatening remarks/comments are specifically prohibited and as such shall be subject to discipline.
Physical contact between staff/student and student/student shall be at a minimum level, commensurate with the accomplishment of the mission of the academy. It will be done in either a demonstrative/explanatory or congratulatory manner with the only exceptions being the safety and wellbeing of students or preventing disruptions during a field trip. Physical contact is defined as acceptable and unacceptable.
- Examples of acceptable contact would be handshakes, high fives, fist bumps, demonstrating aviation hand signals, demonstrating how to properly approach an aircraft.
- Examples of unacceptable contact are hitting, striking, grabbing, pushing, shoving, tripping or any other similar action. Unacceptable contact is prohibited and as such shall be subject to discipline.
As the academy is aviation based, we take field trips to and tour facilities that are operational in nature such as fixed base operators and flight lines, air traffic control towers, air traffic control radar rooms. The potential exists for a dangerous situation to occur if an inattentive student gets too close to a turning propeller or in curiosity tries to push the “red button” in a control tower. In these hopefully rare instances, abrupt physical contact/intervention may be necessary on the part of a staff member and is authorized.
The Flight Academy has an outstanding reputation both inside and outside of the Pensacola community. This is the result of over twenty years of hard work, dedication and an unwavering commitment to adhere to the highest standards of professional, personal and ethical conduct in all areas.
Members of the Board of Directors, staff, volunteers and mentors are expected to conduct themselves in a manner which upholds the tradition and enhances the reputation of the academy. They are not to engage in any activity which could bring discredit upon, endanger the reputation of or legally jeopardize the academy.
As in any organization, there may be instances where there are questions as to whether taking certain actions or engaging in a particular activities will violate the standards of conduct. If such a situation arises, do not proceed. Contact the president who will make the final determination regarding as to whether the actions or activities are appropriate or not.
Any physical meeting and interaction between flight academy students, parents or guardians and board of directors members, staff and volunteers shall take place during published operating hours at the flight academy spaces or official academy events. After hours/off site meetings or any other type of social interaction are specifically prohibited.
Confiscation of flight academy student personal property (cell phones, I-pads, game devices etc.) by staff, volunteers or mentors is prohibited.
We are committed to an organizational environment in which all individuals are treated with respect and dignity. Each individual has the right to work/volunteer in a professional atmosphere that promotes equal opportunities, equality and inclusion, and prohibits discriminatory practices, including harassment. Therefore, GDCJFA expects that all relationships among persons in the organization will be business-like and free of bias; prejudice, discrimination, and harassment against any individuals, including the LBGTQ community.
In order to keep this commitment, GDCJFA maintains a strict policy of prohibiting unlawful harassment of any kind, including sexual harassment and harassment based on race, color, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, sex, age, physical or mental disability or any other characteristic protected by state, federal or local employment discrimination laws.
This policy applies to all Staff, Junior Staff, Mentors, Students and guests who engage in unlawful harassment in the workplace.
Sexual harassment includes, but is not limited to, making unwanted sexual advances and requests for sexual favors where either:
1. Submission to such conduct is made an explicit or implicit term or condition of participation; or
2. Submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as the basis of decisions affecting such individual; or
3. Such conduct has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with an individual’s performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive environment.
Those who violate this policy are subject to discipline up to and including the possibility of immediate discharge from the organization and its’ premises.
Examples of unlawful harassment include, but are not limited to:
- Verbal conduct such as epithets, derogatory jokes or comments, slurs or unwanted sexual advances, invitations or comments.
- Visual conduct such as derogatory and/or sexually oriented posters, photography, cartoons, drawings, e-mail and faxes or gestures.
- Physical conduct such as assault, unwanted touching, blocking normal movement.
- Threats and demands to submit to sexual requests in order to keep ones job or position in return for sexual favors.
- Retaliation for having reported or threatened to report unlawful harassment.
Any person who believes he or she has been harassed by a member, or agent of GDCJFA or by a non-employee should promptly report the facts of the incident or incidents and the names of the individual(s) involved to the GDCJFA President or Vice-President.
Upon receipt of a complaint, the organization will undertake a prompt, thorough, objective and good faith investigation.