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Parent Taught vs. Driverís Ed

Why Choose Parent Taught? - Point

1.   Itís cheaper--it cost $20 with DPS.

2.   Convenience--I can do it at home.

3.   Parents know how to drive and can teach their own kids

Why Choose Parent Taught? - Counterpoint

1. Itís cheaper Ö But is it really? The $20 DPS fee is just the beginning. Once you obtain your Parent Taught package, you will then have to purchase an on-line drivers education package. This can range from $180-$350. Then you will have to teach the course to your teen.

Also, most auto insurance companies offer a 10% discount off your teen's insurance premiums for a three year period when they take the course through a DE school. This discount more than offsets the tuition for Teen Drivers Education during the first year.

2. Itís Convenient Ö Because you have lots of time to teach? Most adults have very little time to teach the drivers education material (1500 pages of information). Our school has convenient classes geared for a teen's busy schedule. PLUS...with Parent Taught once you receive your $20 packet from DPS (which takes 6 weeks to receive) you must also purchase another drivers education program. After this, you must visit the DPS and stand in line to register to be your child's drivers ed instructor. By registering you are agreeing to teach every task outlined in the classroom and in-car program. Not just sign off on the paperwork.

3. Parents know how to drive and can teach their own kids Ö In reality most parents acquire many bad driving habits over the years; (Do you always use your turn signal? Stop behind the stop sign or white crosswalk? Ever change lanes in an intersection? Do you really remember all the rules of the road?) And finally, the parent/teen teaching experience is very stressful and challenging at best and your family car has no instructor brake or safety equipment.

4. The most important factor. How much is your child's safety worth? Many parents have no problem buying computers, X-Boxes or cell phones for their children. But what we teach at Driving School of North Texas isn't a game. We teach life saving skills that your child will use every day of their life.

But don't take our word for it.

A Study by Texas Transportation Institute

Since Parent Taught (PT) was introduced in 1997 the number of teen accidents and deaths have been on the rise.

In April of 2007, the Texas Transportation Institute (TTI) released an extensive report comparing Parent Taught to professional Driverís Education schools. Their findings show that teenagers taught to drive by someone other than a professional driver education instructor are more likely to be involved in a serious traffic crash. The study found that after supervisory and Graduated Driver License restrictions are removed, Parent Taught drivers are nearly three times more likely to be involved in a fatal crash than young drivers taught by commercial driving school instructors.

Parents are not required to complete any training, whereas DE Instructors are required to complete a rigorous 135 hour course of in-car and classroom training before being certified to teach teens to drive.

TTIís study found that (Parent-Taught) novice drivers were more likely to be convicted of driving violations, including speeding and more likely to be in a serious crash. In the six months of driving experience following the learnersí permit period, (as soon as the student receives their license) Parent Taught drivers were involved in nearly 50 percent more crashes, in which at least one person received a serious injury. Similarly, during the year following the period where the student is supervised by an adult, Parent Taught drivers were involved in fatal crashes at a much higher rate than teens who completed commercial driving school education. They also learned that most parents donít read or teach the entire Driver's Education curriculum, leaving out important information.

As a result, Texas Legislation is considering the following improvements:

Strengthen the criteria for parental participation in the Parent Taught program, including the disqualification of parents with poor driving records.

Require training and/or testing for parents who want to teach their children to drive.

Improve the monitoring of and accountability for the activities of the Parent Taught program.

Require road tests for all drivers under the age of 18 before granting a license. (This has now been implemented.)

**The study was conducted by TTI for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and involved analysis of 1.4 million driver records, a mail survey of young drivers and nine focus groups of teen drivers, their parents and driver education instructors.

***If you're still unsure, please give us a call. Thanks!