Texas Driver Education - Parent Taught Drivers Ed
In Texas, the successful completion of a Texas driver education course is a required step towards getting a learner’s permit for residents under the age of 25. There are three ways to obtain the necessary Texas driver education: the Parent Taught Driver Education (PTDE) program, a class at a public school, or a course at a private commercial driving training school.
Each of the three different methods for Texas drivers education will be discussed here, as well as some other pertinent information that parents need to know about getting a drivers license in Texas.
Texas Drivers Ed Online
The Department of Public Safety in Texas offers a program that allows parents to take the reins of teaching Texas drivers education to their own children in the privacy and comfort of their homes. This program is called the Parent Taught Driver Education (PTDE).
PTDE programs can come in several forms: online, a teaching kit, or a combination of both. Online driver education is quickly becoming the preferred method, since it is probably the most convenient way for teen drivers to get the driver education they need. There is no set schedule or timeframe that teen drivers must meet when they take online driver education. They can learn what they need to learn at their own pace.
Texas drivers education is generally spilt into two parts - the first part must be completed before teen drivers can apply for a learners permit. Then the second part of the course will need to be fulfilled after the acquisition of a learners permit and before the driving exam for a drivers license. This is true for all Texas driver education, no matter what method is taken, but for PTDE programs, online instruction or multimedia instruction in the form of CD-ROMS and DVDs will provide the bulk of the content for the first part. The parent takes over during the second part, which consists of practice driving time.
If you prefer to teach your kids everything they need to know, including safe driving and laws, a PTDE program would probably be the right choice for you. Just make sure that you choose a state approved program.
You would need to enroll into the course first by purchasing the program and then fill out a form (DL-92) and send it to the state of Texas. They will then send you a packet and then you can start teaching your child how to drive. Course #107 is a state approved online Texas drivers ed course that many parents and teens use.
Texas Driver Education at a Public School
Another way to get the Texas drivers education that the state requires of teen drivers is to take a texas drivers ed class at a public school. This includes public high schools, education service centers, colleges, and universities.
This method might be a good choice if your child is already attending a public school, since they can just add the course to their daily schedule. However, they will be required to attend every class and make up for any hours they miss due to sickness or any other reason. The schedule is set by the school and teen drivers must follow it. If too many hours are missed, your child might have to retake the course to meet the state’s requirements to obtain a learners permit and a drivers license.
Many Texas drivers ed classes include stimulator driving technology, which will enable your child to complete his/her required practice driving hours in the safety of the classroom. Simulator driving hours can be exchanged for driving hours, but at the ratio of 4 stimulator driving hours for 1 hour of real driving.
A last note on driver education at a public school: 32 hours is the minimum number of hours required by the state for the classroom phase (the first part of Texas drivers education), but some classes may involve as long as 40 or 56 hours in the classroom.
Texas Driver Education at a Private Driving Training School
A course at a private driving training school is similar to what can be found in a Texas drivers ed class in a public school. Teen drivers would need to follow a set and rigid schedule and be required to make up for any missed hours.
There are certain benefits to taking a Texas driver education course at a training school as opposed to a public school. Partial classroom instruction can be transferred from a training school to another school, so if you need to transfer your child to another school for any reason, it would be a fairy simple process. Also, private driving training schools are closely managed and thus you can be confident that they are state approved and highly qualified to teach your child how to drive.
Choosing the Texas Driver Education Method That’s Right For You and Your Child
You will need to ask a few important questions to help you determine which method is the right choice for you and your teen driver(s). Would a parent-taught Texas drivers education be the most convenient for your and your child’s schedules, or would it take up too much of your time? What are the costs for each of the three methods? Does your child have a busy schedule or does he/she have a lot of time available to dedicate to attending classes and practicing driving?
Whatever method you choose, it’s very important to ensure that the program is state approved and provides quality instruction. Send off your child into the world as a smart and careful driver to make the streets just a bit safer for your child and everyone else’s child by ensuring he/she receives the best Texas drivers education possible.