A teen driving school shouldn't just help your teenager pass the state's driving exam, but also help your child become a responsible driver with proper vehicle control techniques. In most states, anyone under the age of 18 who wants to get a driver's license must attend a special training course called Driver's Education. Most driving schools enroll teens from the age of 14 years and 11 months. The course conducted is categorized into two parts. The first part provides a minimum of 30 hours of classroom training and the second part provides six hours of behind the wheel training. The training program is usually completed within a period of four to six weeks.
Pros of Teen Driving School
Some of the advantages of teen driving schools are:
- Teens learn to drive safely and responsibly
- Teens learn the traffic laws involving issues such as right of way, traffic and pedestrians
- They obtain details about auto insurance, the importance of different parts of an insurance policy and their ramifications
- They also learn skills such as first aid and know what to do at the scene of an accident
- The course provides sound information on road and traffic signs and how they work
- Teens become knowledgeable about the legal system, how to deal with a police officer and speeding tickets
- The course also provides information about the importance of maintaining a vehicle on a regular basis
Cons of Teen Driving School
Teen driving also has its drawbacks and limitations:
- Generally, teen driving schools only provide six hours of behind the wheel training, and this is insufficient as a new driver needs more practice to learn to drive proficiently. Parents can help by practicing with the teenager after the professional lessons
- Often, your child isn't driving the car for six hours during the behind the wheel training. The teen may be sitting in the car while another teenager is behind the wheel. You should ensure that your child gets the six hours of behind the wheel training offered by the school
- Public high schools offer driver's ed, but due to constraints in budgets and liability issues, they often don't offer behind the wheel training. This classroom training doesn't prepare the teenager to face traffic conditions on the road and doesn't provide the requisite driving practice. Parents should consider enrolling the teen for private driver training schools in such cases
Common Distractions for Teen Drivers
Being behind the wheel is a new experience to a teen driver. These youngest members of the driving community have a lot to learn, and they contend with some specific conditions that can make them more of a risk on the road. Here are some of the common distractions that can be problematic for teen drivers.
Teen Drivers and Their Peers
Peer pressure is a top driving distraction for teens, according to many experts. Multiple safety studies have concluded that teen drivers are more likely to be in an accident when they have other teen passengers in the vehicle. Whether it's showing off for the opposite gender, or horsing around with friends, distraction from passengers can lead to a lot of reckless driving situations.
Teen drivers are often seduced by the many neat technologies included in today's vehicles, as well as other technologies, like cell phones, that exist outside of a driving setting. These often intrude to the driving experience. Not all teens are disciplined enough to keep their cell phone off while driving, and this can lead to some bad situations.
Teens may also have issues with multi-tasking in a vehicle, where playing loud music and fiddling with stereo systems can lead them to lose control of the vehicle or lose concentration on the road. Older drivers have generally learned to synchronize their use of vehicle systems for greater safety behind the wheel.
Teen drivers are going through an emotional time in their lives, where life changes and even physical hormonal changes can cause them to be less controlled than drivers of other age groups. The average teen driver may be more likely to let emotion get in the way of calm, controlled driving than the average commuter. Teens often need a little more guidance to keep their driving behaviors under control.
A teenage driver may also struggle with the balance between exploring their individuality and pushing boundaries, and some of the specific risks of reckless driving and other vehicle situations. It's important to always distinguish road safety from other kinds of issues. After all, driving is a specific activity that puts each individual into a greater societal context. It's something that drivers should learn about in their very first trips on the road, rather than later, when they may have something on their driving record that they regret.
These are just some of the major issues that teenage drivers deal with every day. Greater self-esteem and more driver education will often lead to much more empowerment for these youngest drivers who need to successfully assimilate themselves into the driving community for a responsible future behind the wheel.