How in the heck did we get here?
I will admit, the whole "getting a driver's permit" thing snuck up on me...but I would have been way out of the loop had it not been for my friend, who has older kids. She (THANKFULLY!) informed me of the crazy (and VERY strict) timeline that is the Colorado permit regimen. My kid would have been one extremely unhappy camper if I had botched up the required steps. And nooooo one wants to deal with a moody teenager.
Right about now, you might be saying that you are totally okay with your kid not getting his/her permit on time. But, think of it this way...you want your child to learn and practice under your guidance for as looooong as possible, right??
One of the MOST IMPORTANT steps is finding the right Driver's Education facility for your family...your kiddo is required to complete 30 hours of classes, either in the classroom or online, so they'll be spending quite a bit of time on this. You'll want to find a good one.
I lucked out with an AMAZING company called Western Slope Driving Institute. I met with Doreen (an AWESOME lady!) before signing up, and loved what she had to say. You could tell that the staff REALLY cared about the kids, and WANTED them to be safe and successful drivers. All of the instructors are former or active law enforcement officers, which I have found really makes an impact on the kids...they have first hand experience with the kinds of accidents we are all trying to prevent. And, they have access to the most current info for our teens.
Despite the fact that the kids spend 30 hours in class, my son looked forward to it. There are several class options - weekends and weekdays. This is where your planning will come in! Thanksgiving and Spring Break are great times to knock those classes out. There is also the online option, but I highly recommend the live class.
Most teenagers love to drive. The driving lessons that Western Slope offers are top notch. The instructors make everyone (including mom and dad!) feel comfortable putting your kiddo behind the wheel. One thing I LOVED was that they require 10 hours of driving with family members before they'll take your teen out on the road.
I'm really looking forward to my son taking part in the Precision Skills Track...he'll get first hand experience with hazards and driving patterns on a closed simulation course. He will love it. I will be grateful for the lessons learned, because you can never prepare your kid enough for the road. I'll update for you once he finishes!
First, check out the Drivers Permit requirements here:
Then, I highly recommend you give Western Slope a call. Or sign up online. Either way. But don't wait! The 2016-2017 classes are out! Classes fill up quickly and as I said before, you DO NOT want a moody teenager at your house.
Good luck, Moms and Dads! You CAN do this! It can be a bit nervewracking at first, but it only takes a few times with your teen behind the wheel for the hyperventilating to cease. You got your teen to this point. It's a good thing. I promise. ;)