State Outlines Path for Driver’s Ed Students

Students enrolled in driver’s education programs can finish their training in the summer or fall, the State Education Department said Wednesday.

Under normal conditions, a driver and traffic safety education course must provide each student with a minimum of 24 hours of classroom instruction and a minimum of 24 hours of laboratory instruction for an MV-285 Certificate of Completion of Driver Education Course. Lab instruction must include six hours behind the wheel, six hours of in-car observation, and 12 hours of additional laboratory instruction. However, because of the shutdown of school because of the coronavirus  epidemic, “SED recognizes the complexities of responding to the COVID-19 emergency,” the guidance states.


  • Students who have completed 18 hours or more of classroom instruction may use online learning to meet the 24-hour requirements for classroom instruction. Students must not engage in more than 90 minutes of such instruction per day.
  • It is within the discretion of driver and traffic safety instructors to issue an MV-278 Pre-Licensing Course Completion Certificate to any student that has completed the required syllabus as described in the instructor’s manual.

The MV-278 certificate enables students to schedule DMV road tests. Prior to a student taking a road test, a parent must certify that the student has completed 50 hours of supervised drivingDriving hours with a school instructor and/or private instructor can be combined with parent-supervised hours to reach the required 50 hours.

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