Roughly 28% of 16 year olds were obtaining their driver’s license in the year of 2010. Thant’s 3 out of every 10 students! The number of students getting their license continues to drop.
I have had countless conversations with students, parents and staff over the past year about how students these days just aren’t eager to get behind the wheel. Why is that? I remember not only learning how to drive on back roads well before getting my permit but rushing to the DMV on my 15th birthday to make it legal. For students today I thought it was a lackadaisical problem. According to research I found in popular mechanics this month it sounds like students are finding contentment in technology rather than the roaring engine or independence behind the wheel. Getting the keys from mom or dad at the age of 16 five to ten years ago meant freedom from home, to go where your friends were.
I suspect that social media bringing friends to our fingertips has underwhelmed the desire for teens to have face to face meetings, hangouts and relationships. While students hide behind the computer or smart phone the roads are slower to grow with young drivers. Our students are becoming less mobile and relying on mom and dad longer for rides. My heart goes out to those students who settle for experiencing life through technology rather than face to face relationships. Getting a student behind the wheel with proper driver’s education can pay huge dividends – helping them get a job, understand responsibility at a higher level, rely less on mom and dad to do for them what they can do for themselves.
Teach them how to drive:
- Teach them how in a clunker, not in mom or dad’s mercedes.
- Teach them manual before automatic. It’s something I learned later on, but so grateful I know how. I actually prefer a manual.
- Show them how to check fluids, change a flat, and change the oil. This will save them big bucks and keep them from being scammed by a mechanic.
- Parallel parking. Need I say more?
- My parents set curfew for me the first few years I had my license, not a bad idea.
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