Immediately following COB's release of the Golden Age of Tech in May, 1996, the doors to every Class VIII course room on the planet were closed, pending students completing the new Golden Age Briefing Course (or Class VI Certainty) and its Internship.
No Class VIII course room had ever been closed up before — not even for a few days, much less for 4 years.
When AOLA's Class VIII course room finally reopened in 2000, it took an additional 4� years to produce a Class VIII — the first Class VIII made in the West U.S. since the release of the Golden Age of Tech 8 years earlier.
Since then, the flow has increased, but only by a trickle. At the end of the first decade of the Golden Age of Tech ((1996-2005), for example, AOLA had graduated only five Class VIIIs — an average of one every two years.
Compared to AOLA's average of one a week in the late 60s and early 70s, this represents a statistical drop of 99% — the single largest crash of any training stat in the history of Scientology.
(The Auditor magazine featuring these early Class VIII stats can be found in the "What Happened to Training?" section of this web site.)