What is the Texas Parent Taught Behind-the-Wheel Course?
The Texas Parent Taught Behind-the-Wheel Course is a guide for parents to teach their teens behind-the-wheel driver training.
The course is regulated by the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR). The TDLR licenses private schools to offer
this course. Safe2Drive is an approved provider. Teens are required to complete 44 hours of practice driving to qualify for a
provisional driver license. Parents or guardians who wish to instruct their teens purchase the course from an approved school. The course provides a
step-by-step guide for parents to help their teens acquire the knowledge and skills about basic vehicle operation such as turning,
backing, and parking. Logs are also included to assist parents with documenting the 44 hours.
The behind-the-wheel training is divided into four components:
- 7 hours of behind-the-wheel instruction;
- 7 hours of behind-the-wheel observation;
- 10 hours of night-time driving;
- 20 hours of additional practice;
The topics covered in the training include:
- Pre-Drive Tasks
- Basics of Vehicle Operation and Control
- Attention and Communication
- Managing Vehicle Space
- Reference Points
- Turns, Changing Lanes, and Passing
- Aggressive Drivers
- Distracted Driving
- Traffic Laws and Right-of-Way
- Safe Driving Techniques
- Driving in Adverse Weather
Safe2Drive's Texas Parent Taught Behind-the-Wheel Course
Safe2Drive is an approved provider of the Texas Parent Taught Behind-the-Wheel Course. Our course is much less expensive
than hiring a certified driving instructor. It is easy to understand and self-paced. Our materials guide parents on how to instruct their teens
on the rules of the road, rights-of-way, the basics of the driving skills, intermediate safe driving practices, and more. Logs are included to help parents track,
document, and prepare their teens' driving histories for submission to the Texas DPS.
Eligibility for Teens
In order to be eligible to take the Parent Taught Behind-the-Wheel course, you must meet the following requirements:
- You must have completed at least the first six hours of the “classroom” or theory portion of a driver education course.
If you have not yet started the classroom portion of driver education, you can take our online Texas Teen Driver Education course to meet this requirement.
- You must have your learner license.
Eligibility for Parents (or Guardians)
There are a few requirements a person must meet in order to be eligible to instruct a Parent Taught Behind-the-Wheel course:
- The instructor must be the student’s parent, step-parent, grandparent, step-grandparent, foster parent or legal guardian appointed by a court.
A power of attorney is not considered a legal guardian.
Additionally, a parent, legal guardian, or a judge of a court with jurisdiction over the student can designate a person to instruct the course who:
- is at least 25 years old;
- does not charge a fee for conducting the course; and
- has at least seven years of driving experience.
- The instructor must possess a valid license for the preceding three years that has not been suspended, revoked, or forfeited in the past three years for an offense that involves the operation of a motor vehicle.
- Instructors cannot have:
- a conviction (including a probated sentence) of criminally negligent homicide;
- a conviction (including a probated sentence) of driving while intoxicated in the last seven years; and
- a conviction in the preceding three years of:
- three or more moving violations described by Section 542.304, Transportation Code, including violations that resulted in an accident; or
- two or more moving violations described by Section 542.304, Transportation Code, that resulted in an accident.
Instructors are responsible for checking their criminal and driver records prior to requesting the PTDE Program Guide. The Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) will verify the instructor’s record when it processes the student’s learner license and again when it processes the student’s provisional driver license.
If the DPS determines that the instructor does not meet the requirements, the DPS will deny the learner license or provisional driver license along with any prior classroom instruction or behind the wheel/in-car instruction provided by the ineligible instructor.
To verify your eligibility to be an instructor before ordering the Behind-the-Wheel Course, please use the DPS Online Driver Record Request System.
When to Begin Behind-the-Wheel Training
A teen may begin behind-the-wheel training as soon as the learner license is earned. The behind-the-wheel training is
part of the Texas Graduated Driver Licensing Program (GDL). Once a teen has a learner license, he or she then receives instruction and practice on driving a car. The
instruction can be provided by a certified driving instructor or a qualified parent or guardian.
Forty-four (44) hours of practice driving must be completed before a teen can apply for a provisional license, which is Phase 2 of the GDL.
What is the difference between Parent Taught Driver Education and Parent Taught Behind-the-Wheel?
The Driver Education program is a complete driver education course that encompasses both the educational portion and the behind-the-wheel portion. Think of it as theory and
practice. The educational portion is the theory, and the behind-the-wheel portion is the practice. Both are needed in Texas to obtain a license. Safe2Drive offers both
programs: a Parent Taught Driver Education Course and a Parent Taught Behind-the-Wheel Course.
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