Drivers ed in Michigan is often the first step for young motorists and those learning how to drive for the first time to get behind the wheel sooner with a state drivers license. Driving lessons that are offered by the Secretary of State (SOS) office are split between two segments. The state law requires young motorists under the age of 18 to complete both in order to obtain their driver’s license. For more information on the Michigan drivers education program, including the requirements and benefits it has to offer, segments and how to enroll, review the sections that have been provided below.
What is driver’s education in Michigan?
Michigan driving classes are a way to teach, guide and supervise young motorists as they learn how to operate a motor vehicle. Successful completion of a driving course is necessary for a student to obtain his or her full driving credentials. While a first time driving school is generally taken advantage of by teens who wish to get behind the wheel, it is also a way for adults who may never have driven a vehicle before to learn how to drive in a safe manner. It is important to know that an online driving course option is not available within the state of Michigan and all programs are held in a classroom setting.
Michigan requires driver’s ed for any motorist under the age of 18 years. If a student has previously completed a drivers education program through another state, then that permit or license may be accepted by Michigan, but will be determined on a case by case basis. If denied, then the teen will need to complete a driving course in Michigan or wait until his or her 18th birthday to obtain a Michigan driver’s license.
Additionally, the state of Michigan eliminated the drivers education fund as of 2004, which had once provided financial assistance to families who were facing a hardship. There is currently no way to obtain a partial or full reimbursement within the state. Driver safety course programs will have to be paid in full up front before a student can attend. Teens must be at least 14 years and eight months of age in order to attend.
The Benefits of Michigan Teen Driving School
For most, the benefits of a Michigan driver ed course involves obtaining a state driver license and getting behind the wheel sooner. As outlined above, driver lessons are required for any teen under the age of 18 that wishes to obtain his or her Michigan driving license. The driving safety course can also provide students with guidance on how to operate a motor vehicle safely and in accordance with state and federal laws.
Michigan Teen Driving Course: Segment One
The first part of Michigan drivers ed, commonly referred to as segment one, is the first step in drivers education that a teen must complete before he or she is eligible to move onto the next step. During this portion of their driving lessons, students will be required to meet a minimum of 24 hours of class room instruction, a minimum of four hours of observation time in a training vehicle and a minimum of six hours of behind-the-wheel instruction with their driving teacher.
During the classroom instruction of the driving course, a variety of driving techniques, traffic law discussions and defensive driving and safety tips are covered. These classroom driving lessons cannot exceed two hours per instruction day and at least four hours of classroom instructions must be completed before beginning any hands-on driving instruction.
Only after the completion segment one can a teenager obtain his or her level one learners license, commonly referred to in Michigan as a learner’s permit.
Michigan Teen Driving Course: Segment Two
The second part of the Michigan drivers ed program is segment two. In order to enroll in this level of drivers education, the teen must have held a valid level one learner license for a minimum of three continuous months. During the three-month period, 30 hours of driving experience must have been completed, with two of those hours completed after sunset. The second segment of the driving class that is offered within Michigan will include an additional six hours of classroom instruction, with a maximum of two hours of instruction per day. During that period, the student must also acquire an additional 20 hours of driving experience, eight more of which must be during nighttime hours.
Upon the successful completion of segment two driving lessons, as long as the student has had his or her level one license for a minimum of six months and is at least 16 years of age, he or she is eligible to take a driving skills test in order to obtain a level two license.
How to Enroll in Drivers Education in Michigan
If you or your teen is ready to enroll in a drivers ed course in Michigan, then you are likely wondering how you can enroll. The Secretary of State office offers a wide selection of approved drivers education locations, many of which are even an optional part of high school curriculum. Most driver education programs do come with a fee, but the fee can vary, so it can be financially beneficial to inquire with multiple programs.
Some teen driving classes will even offer makeup lessons for a missed behind-the-wheel lesson or classroom education. Another vital driving lesson topic to consider is the attendance policy, as well as the refund policy. It is recommended that you always inquire about those policies during your initial inquiry or visit. Other factors that may be considered include the following items:
- Pick up and drop off times
- Material cost of textbooks
- The fee for replacement certificates if one is lost
- Proximity to home
- Teaching material and if all material is up to date
- If there are any other additional, applicable fees