2006 Code of Virginia § 22.1-205 - Driver education programs

22.1-205. Driver education programs.

A. The Board of Education shall establish for the public school system astandardized program of driver education in the safe operation of motorvehicles. Such program shall consist of classroom training andbehind-the-wheel driver training. However, any student who participates insuch a program of driver education shall meet the academic requirementsestablished by the Board, and no student in a course shall be permitted tooperate a motor vehicle without a license or permit to do so issued by theDepartment of Motor Vehicles. The program shall include instructionconcerning (i) alcohol and drug abuse, (ii) aggressive driving, (iii)distracted driving, (iv) motorcycle awareness, and (v) organ and tissue donorawareness. Such instruction shall be developed by the Department incooperation with the Virginia Alcohol Safety Action Program, the Departmentof Health, and the Department of Mental Health, Mental Retardation andSubstance Abuse Services, as appropriate. Such program shall require aminimum number of miles driven during the behind-the-wheel driver training.

B. The Board shall assist school divisions by preparation, publication anddistribution of competent driver education instructional materials to ensurea more complete understanding of the responsibilities and duties of motorvehicle operators.

C. Each school board shall determine whether to offer the program of drivereducation in the safe operation of motor vehicles and, if offered, whethersuch program shall be an elective or a required course. Only school divisionscomplying with the standardized program and regulations established by theBoard of Education and the provisions of 46.2-335 shall be entitled toparticipate in the distribution of state funds appropriated for drivereducation.

D. The actual initial driving instruction shall be conducted, with motorvehicles equipped as may be required by regulation of the Board of Education,on private or public property removed from public highways if practicable; ifimpracticable, then, at the request of the school board, the CommonwealthTransportation Board shall designate a suitable section of road near theschool to be used for such instruction. Such section of road shall be markedwith signs, which the Commonwealth Transportation Board shall supply, givingnotice of its use for driving instruction. Such signs shall be removed at theclose of the instruction period. No vehicle other than those used for drivertraining shall be operated between such signs at a speed in excess of 25miles per hour. Violation of this limit shall be a Class 4 misdemeanor.

E. The Board of Education may, in its discretion, promulgate regulations forthe use and certification of paraprofessionals as teaching assistants in thedriver education programs of school divisions.

F. The Board of Education shall approve correspondence courses for theclassroom training component of driver education. These correspondencecourses shall be consistent in quality with instructional programs developedby the Board for classroom training in the public schools. Studentscompleting the correspondence courses for classroom training, who areeligible to take behind-the-wheel driver training, may receivebehind-the-wheel driver training (i) from a public school, upon payment ofthe required fee, if the school division offers behind-the-wheel drivertraining and space is available, (ii) from a driver training school licensedby the Department of Motor Vehicles, or (iii) in the case of a home schoolingparent or guardian instructing his own child who meets the requirements forhome school instruction under 22.1-254.1 or subdivision B 1 of 22.1-254,from a behind-the-wheel training course approved by the Board. Nothing hereinshall be construed to require any school division to provide behind-the-wheeldriver training to nonpublic school students.

(Code 1950, 22-235.1; 1962, c. 482; 1966, c. 208; 1968, c. 433; 1974, c.154; 1980, c. 559; 1988, c. 105; 1989, c. 392; 1998, c. 96; 1999, c. 928;2000, cc. 82, 651; 2001, cc. 659, 665; 2002, cc. 177, 386; 2003, c. 951.)

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