Most high school students can’t wait to get their driver’s licenses. Having a license is going out to lunch every day, driving friends around and just overall freedom.
Some students wait until they are 18 to get their license, while others, on the day of the 15 ½ birthday, go straight to the DMB for their learner’s permit. Because driver’s education is required for a driver’s permit, driver’s education should be an offered course at the school.
“It would be better so we don’t have to take a course outside [of school],” junior Liliana Rodriguez said. “It’s wasting time because we need to be doing out homework.”
Although many would like to have driver’s education as a regular course at the school, the finances are the issue. According to Principal Wynne Satterwhite, the school only has a certain number of full time equivalence (FTE) teachers. Having a driver’s education course will take away instructors from other courses.
“If a lot of students want it, then it will be with the understanding that it would be a trade off. Other electives will suffer the consequences,” Principal Wynne Satterwhite said.
With all the schoolwork students have, driver’s education is a last priority. Many students delay this until winter break, or spring break or even until the summertime. It is such a drag that students have to constantly keep putting off driver’s education when it is something stress-free and should be available to the entire student body. The course at the school would not only save time, but will also mold better, more knowledgeable drivers.
Others differ in their opinion on the usefulness of the course and believe that it is unnecessary.
“I don’t think that people would take it if it was a class because everyone wants the shorter and easier option, and that’s why everyone does the internet course,” junior Anne Kim said.
True, online does take a shorter amount of time. There’s no denying that. But this is a similar situation to the health course that many sophomores take. Some people take it online, but others benefit from a classroom environment and choose to take the course at school. A course is preferred for some students who feel they would not have the discipline to complete a course on their own. It should be an option at the school for those who would like that classroom setting. Not everybody has to agree to the course, but it should be available for students.
Although driver’s education does not need to be made mandatory, it should at least be offered at the school. If it was available at the school, many people would have the option of getting their licenses earlier and more importantly, they will also be better prepared, more skillful drives.
Other high schools including Saratoga High School make driver’s education mandatory. Freshmen are to take one semester of health and one semester of driver’s education. So if it is available at other schools, and with no financial difficulties, is that not the case here?
Driver’s education is offered in summer school for two full Saturdays. It was brought to the attention in the district and was first included in summer school last year. JV football coach Randy Jimenez is the instructor for this course.