News, Blogs and Information that can help parents make more informed decisions about their child's driver training.
DrivingMBA is dedicated to educating the community about the topic of teenage driving. This is the most dangerous time in a young person’s life. It is essential that parents are equipped with information in order to make good decisions for their new driver and for their family. When a novice driver is learning how to drive parents play a critical role in the driver training process. Even if you are working with an adult novice driver, the practice phase is a very important part of the process. For the “coach” it can be “scary” and for the new driver it can be “frustrating.” This class is designed to assist those that will be practicing with their new driver in their role as coach.
The course includes excerpts from a video on the teenage brain so that parents can better understand the brain development of adolescents and teens. Brain mapping indicates that the adolescent brain does not fully develop until the mid to late twenties. Instructors provide resources and advice on how to approach conversations and setting the ground rules from the beginning. We provide practical tips on how to go from driving in your neighborhood to driving on surface streets and highways. This is a two part course and pre-COVID, Part ONE was done in-class and provided an opportunity to interact with other parents and learn tips and techniques that work for others. Unfortunately, due to COVID-19 we have placed Part ONE and Part TWO on-line. It is our intention to bring Part ONE back to the classroom as soon as it is safe to do so.
Currently Part ONE and Part Two are offered as on-line courses. This allows parents or anyone coaching a novice driver the flexibility to go through the course at their own pace. The objective is to prepare parents or anyone working with a novice driver for the task of practicing during the permit phase. No matter how old a person is, it takes months of training and practice to become proficient enough to navigate today’s roadways. This course is included in all of DrivingMBA’s programs and packages. Before January 2020, the course was called the Parent Class. It was done in a single 3 hour class. The course has been updated and in January 2020 we launched the 2 Part Coaching Program where Part ONE was done in a 2 hour class in-house and Part TWO is on-line. Below is a video featuring past class participants and what they had to say about the class:
Due to COVID-19 this course is completely on-line. Contact our office at 480-948-1648 for more information.
Nothing from September 19, 2020 to January 19, 2021.
MANY PARENTS REMAIN SHOCKINGLY CLUELESS about the magnitude of the risk for teen drivers. They give in much too easily to pressure from teens to obtain a driver’s license on or near their 16th birthday. Likewise, many allow their kids to breeze through the perfunctory steps that pass for driving instruction in this country, then blithely hand over the keys to the family vehicle, or buy one for their young driver right away—often something flashy, top-heavy or
What is so puzzling is how strongly this situation counters typical parental behavior for the first 16 years of a child’s life. During that time parents eagerly spring for all kinds of instruction: piano lessons, dancing lessons, skating lessons and so forth. They cart the kids endlessly back and forth to such sessions, spending hundreds of hours and lots of money. No parent would pay for only six piano lessons and then expect a child to perform at a concert. And no parent would send a child to six swimming lessons then demand a championship
athletic performance. So why is it, when it counts the most—when it becomes a matter of life and death—that so many parents shrink from their responsibility to instruct, supervise and protect their children?
Why do they settle for only six hours of driver training behind the wheel? Most states have at least imposed graduated licensing programs, which strengthen some of the requirements for beginning drivers—and have resulted in decreased fatality rates—but those laws go only so far. Given the situation and the dangers, responsible parents have no choice. They must do for their beginning drivers what they have done during earlier phases of their children’s development. They must assume responsibility to supervise a safe and complete driving instruction program. First, take control All states grant parents authority to decide whether their minor child should obtain a learner’s permit and a license. If a parent thinks a teen is not yet ready, then that parent need do nothing—granting a permit or a license is what requires action, in the form of a signature. In 10 years of writing and speaking about this subject, this has never ceased to amaze me.
When parents express concerns about prospective drivers, and I advise them to hold off the instruction until they are confident their kid is ready, many look stunned—as though they had never even considered refusing to cave in to pressures for the permit and the license. Take the time Safety experts agree good basic driving skills require at least 100 hours of supervised instruction behind the wheel. That means gradually exposing kids to as many of the potential conditions they will face on the road as possible. For both of your sakes, begin in a place of safety, such as an empty parking lot, and move carefully from there into conditions of increasing complexity—but only after the teen has mastered each new skill and challenge.
Don’t hurry There is no specific age at which he or she must begin driving. Forget about your own inconvenience and concentrate on teaching. If at any time you feel a sense of inattention, resistance or rebellion, become the parent again. Say something like: “I’m sorry, but you’re not taking this as seriously as I would have hoped, so we’re going to suspend the lessons until you start showing a better attitude.” Likewise, don’t quit early Even after your teen is licensed, instruction should continue. Lay down sensible limits, such as no passengers for the first six months, curfews, and absolutely no drinking or drugs. Make it a point, whenever you and your teen travel together, to require him or her to drive. It’s a good way to continue to sharpen skills and detect bad habits. And remember that until your child reaches age 18, you still have the authority to suspend or revoke driving privileges.
Last, enjoy this This approach is not punitive—it’s loving and caring. It conveys how much you desire to see your child receive the best training possible, just as you have all along. And it’s a great time to reacquaint yourself with your offspring. Isn’t this worth at least as much as piano lessons?
Phil Berardelli is the author of Safe Young Drivers: A Guide for Parents and Teens,