Georgia’s Teen Driver’s Education Goes Digital

Parents everywhere know the frightening 6 words in the English language are “Can I have the car keys?” The prospect of our teenaged kids hurtling down the road into the unknown is enough to send shivers down the spine of even the most stoic parents.

For the parents of Georgia teens those 6 words come with plenty of advanced warning usually on or about the 15th birthday when little Jane or John announces that they’re ready to get “my learner’s permit”.

So begins the process of watching our children become independent. For most families this period of time is a balancing act with the adults on one side saying slow down and soon to be teen drivers on the other side chomping at the bit to move forward with car shopping. In between, “what’s the hurry” and “what color should I get” lies teen drivers education.

In Georgia, Drivers Education Programs, one must be approved by the Department of Driver Services (DDS). Teen drivers ed courses are designed to teach new teenage drivers the basic skills and knowledge related to “Safely” driving a car. Teen drivers ed programs come in 3 basic formats, classroom, virtual, and now online instructor led.

Georgia drivers ed programs are required to include 30 hours of classroom instruction after which new teen drivers must complete 6 hours of behind the wheel instruction with a licensed driving school or complete the Parent/Teen Guide. At least 40 hours of supervised driving experience is required before new teen drivers can qualify for a Class D Provisional License at 16.

For many parents, demands on their time are already stretched to the breaking point with school events, social obligations, sports and many other extra-curricular activities. This is on top of the countless other normal household chores. Squeezing in time for shuttling to and from drivers ed classes may be too much to ask. For these parents the solution can be found online.

Until recently Online Georgia drivers ed programs came only one way. Now they come in two ways virtual online and instructor led online. The difference being that virtual courses are completed by the student alone without any interaction from an instructor. As any parent of a teenager will tell you, if you want to be sure something is not going to get done right, have a teen do it unsupervised.

Instructor led online drivers education programs however offer the dual benefit of not having to transport the student to yet another location and having a qualified licensed instructor they’re assuring that the student is present and participating in their driver’s education. Through the use of web cameras and microphones the classroom comes to your teenager freeing you to spend your time however you wish.

Instructor led online driver education programs offer the best of both the virtual and physical worlds of teen driver education. Professional instructors are able to work with young drivers to supervise their learning and answer questions as if the student were in the same physical classroom as the instructor.

When it comes to the safety and well-being of their children, parents prefer the certainty of education that is delivered in real-time by a real instructor over the cyber world of virtual courses that lack supervision.

Driver Education Training

Driver training is defined as behind-the-wheel lessons given to students once they complete the classroom program. State licensed instructors train students in dual-controlled vehicles equipped for safety. The instructor has a foot brake attached to the passenger side near the floor, so that the instructor may slow the student down at will. The students who do not meet the age requirement must get written permission from their parents or guardian.

During these in-car training sessions the instructors teach students different aspects of driving. They start by driving on a surface road and learning the basic controls of the car and how to operate it safely. They then progress on to more advanced skills like driving in the dark. At the final stage are trained to drive on the freeway and get exposure to heavy traffic while learning more complex defensive driving skills.

Behind-the-wheel training takes approximately 6 to 10 hours to complete and is spaced out in two-hour sessions taken at the student’s convenience. On completion of the driver-training program, students are awarded a certificate of completion that can then be used to get a driver’s license from the Division of Motor Vehicles. Of course, the student must then pass the DMV requirements, such as knowledge tests and a qualifying driving course.

Driver-training programs are very important for young drivers because they learn the right driving attitudes and develop proper techniques that make them safe and reliable drivers. Without these trainings, the roads would be even more chaotic than they already are.

Driver Education Schools

Besides preparing young and new drivers for their driver’s license, a driver education school also teaches students how to become reliable and safe drivers. Driver’s education teaches the correct driving techniques and rules of the road. In order to provide a driver education program, schools have to be recognized by their state, and instructors have to be licensed by the Division of Motor Vehicles (DVM). There are a number of driver education schools throughout the country.

Driving schools provide students with a variety of driver education courses that are flexible and designed to meet the specific requirements of each individual. There are traditional schools with regular classroom and practical courses; there are some schools that provide online driver education programs, and other schools that provide home study courses.

In the traditional school, students attend normal classes and are lectured by qualified and licensed instructors in the classroom. As part of their practical lesson, students are trained behind the wheel under the supervision of a trained instructor. Classes are usually held two to three times a week. Students are given a minimum of 30 hours of in-class lessons and around 6-10 hours of in-car training.

Online Internet schools provide driver education to anyone who has access to the Internet and prefers to study at their own pace. Students learn via online lessons, quizzes and exams. However, behind-the-wheel training will have to be done in the presence of a qualified instructor. Home school study programs allow students to study from home using textbooks and workbooks. The school conducts regular tests to judge the student’s comprehension of the program. A trained instructor conducts behind-the-wheel trainings.

Schools need to ensure that all students are above the legal driving age when enrolling for the course and if under the age of 14, have to get written consent from their guardian or parent to take behind-the-wheel trainings. On completion of the course, all schools award a certificate of completion to the students that confirm that they have successfully completed the driver education program. This certificate will then allow the student to get a driver’s license from the DMV.