JONESBORO, Ark. (KAIT) - According to Arkansas State Police, an average of 260 teens die in car crashes each month during the summer; many schools no longer offer driver’s education which leaves many without proper training.
Driver’s education isn’t common anymore. Only two schools in Jonesboro offer the course.
Jim Ellis teaches driver’s education full-time at Jonesboro Public Schools. The course can be taken by students in grades 10-12.
The JHS class gives students numerous exams testing their knowledge of laws and regulations of the road.
Then, Ellis and the students will drive, getting the students to experience behind the wheel.
He says many schools choose not to offer it because it’s not required by the state.
“We have to teach math, science, Social Studies, English. We have to do that,” he says. “Unless something is mandated by the state, then it becomes a curricular type of offering. We don’t necessarily have to teach [driver’s education].”
Arkansas State Police Highway Patrol Administrator Lt. Brad Lann agrees that driver’s education is important.
If your school doesn’t offer the course, he suggests using online resources such as the Arkansas Driver Practice Test app or other online resources.
However, to get the real-life experience behind the wheel, Lann suggests parents or relatives take the time to teach young drivers.
This practice can be done in a parking lot or a rural area.
Both Ellis and Lann encourage families of young drivers to help young drivers learn how to drive.