Driving School FAQs
Q. What are the requirements to receive a permit and license?
A. The process of drivers ed is based on two factors. Factor one, is what does the state require. Factor two, is what training do parent’s see most valuable and beneficial for their teen.
In Colorado, a 30 hour online or classroom course has to be attended and passed from a state certified school to obtain a permit by the age of 15 years, 6 months of age. The permit has to be held for 1 year. To obtain a license by the age of 16 years, 6 months of age, 6 hours of behind the wheel training has to be completed with a certified school and the drivers license test must be passed.
What will you require as a parent? At Freedom Drivers Ed, we see the most value in consistent, comprehensive training. For this reason, we recommend parent’s enroll their teen in a 30 hour course and behind the wheel training regardless of their age. The value is proof in our student’s skill level and confidence behind the wheel. We believe training is required regardless of age. It’s upsetting that our state issues licenses to drivers age 16 years, 6 months of age or older who have completed no training. At Freedom Drivers Ed, our mission is to change current teen statistics (car accidents are the number 1 killer of teen drivers age 16-19) and that starts by training each individual with excellence.
Q. When should I start my behind the wheel training?
A. Start your BTW after getting the instruction permit from the DMV. We want our students to be familiar with steering smoothly, brake control, and accelerator control prior to the first session. This can usually be accomplished in 2 – 5 hours of driving with parents.
We strongly recommend the following schedule:
First session – within 2 months of getting the permit.
Second session – 28 to 40 days after the first session.
Third session – 28 to 40 days after the second session.
Downtown Denver City Drive: 10 months after obtaining permit, 50 hours completed with parents and 6 hours BTW completed with instructor.
Mountain Drive: 10 months after obtaining permit, 50 hours completed with parents and 6 hours BTW completed with instructor.
Crash Avoidance Course: 10 months after obtaining permit, 50 hours completed with parents and 6 hours BTW completed with instructor.This schedule allows for practice time to adequately develop proper driving habits that are consistent with what we teach.
Students who wait until the tail end of their permit holding period may be disappointing to discover they can’t get all three BTW sessions completed prior to their driver license eligibility date (see the FAQ regarding practice time required between BTW sessions).
Q. What skills will my teen learn in their behind the wheel sessions?
A. At Freedom Drivers Ed, we have specific skills and learning objectives that correspond to each behind the wheel session. Your teen will not just be completing drive time with our intructors. All of our skills are based off training and the expertise of law enforcement. Crash avoidance as well as defensive driving skills are at the core of our curriculum.
Q. How does the driving school partner with me (the parent) to best prepare my teen to be a safe, independent driver?
A. At Freedom Drivers Ed, we partner with you by giving you printed documents of the defensive driving skills we teach. We also include how to teach and how the skills lowers accident risk. These documents allow you to partner with us in creating consistency and encouraging your teen to develop the best driving habits possible.
Q. Does the driving school offer any other courses to enhance my teen’s driving skills and what qualifies them to teach these added courses?
A. At Freedom Drivers Ed, we offer four added courses that will enhance and refine your teen’s driving skill. We offer skills day, a mountain drive, downtown city drive and a crash avoidance course. Please read more about each course under their respective tabs.
Our instructors are qualified to teach these courses because they have been trained from curriculum designed by law enforcement.
Q. How to do I obtain my pre-registration number?
A. The purpose of pre-registration is for the state of Colorado to communicate with you what identification documents are required to have the permit issued from a full service DMV.
Upon registration you will have received a ‘Welcome Letter’ within 24-48 hours detailing the process of drivers education as well as directions for obtaining your unique pre-registration number.
The state of Colorado requires pre-registration and the number must be supplied to Freedom Drivers Ed so that we can submit your students course completions to the state.
Please call your local DMV with any questions specific about identification documents.
Visit the website listed below to complete pre-registration. Click on “Apply for Drivers License or ID”
Q. What is GDL and what are the steps in the process?
A. GDL stands for Graduated Driver License.
The required steps in the GDL process for teens age 14.5 to 15.5 are:
- Complete an accredited 30 hour classroom or online course,
- Apply for the instruction permit at the DMV at age 15
- Complete 6 hours of behind the wheel (BTW) training after receiving permit
- Log at least 50 hours of driving with parent or guardian (10 of these hours at night), and
- Pass a driving test after holding the instruction permit for at least 12 full months.
- Complete classroom or online driver education or a 4 hour driver awareness course.
- Steps 2 thu 5 above.
See our “Driving Rules” page for laws that apply to new independent drivers.
Q. What identification documents are required at the DMV to have a permit issued?
A. Click here to see a list of required identification documents needed to have a permit issued by the DMV.
Q. Do you provide crash avoidance skills training?
A. Yes. Our Crash Avoidance Skills course is modeled from law enforcement driver training. The skills we teach in the course equip students to safely respond to the critical pre-crash events (causal factors) identified by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in a 2008 report to congress.
You can read more about this course on the Drivers Ed Services page.
Q. Why is there no availability showing on the BTW scheduling page?
A. BTW training is done in three – 2 hour sessions. If you have scheduled all three sessions, the system will not allow any additional sessions to be scheduled.
We require 28 days between sessions. If you have already scheduled one session you will need to advance the calendar in order to see dates available 28 days in the future.
We require 28 days between sessions to allow for student driving habits to be developed consistent with what we teach. Students will develop habits – good or bad. Repetitive practice between sessions working on the skills we teach and communication via emailed documents are what develop driving habits consistent with the proven defensive driving techniques we teach. Without the development of these habits, students will quickly fall back to old habits.
We maintain 2 months of availability from our drive instructors. This is to ensure our drive instructors are available to serve you. By the first of every month, you will see that months’ availability, plus the month after. For example, Oct 1 all of the new availability for November is uploaded. November 1st, all of Decembers availbility is uploaded. Thus to have the most access to all of our drive sessions, log on the beginning of each month to schedule.
Q. What is the purpose for practice time between BTW sessions?
A. Our BTW sessions include a set of specific skills required to avoid the major causes of crashes. These skills are “rolled out” progressively, starting with the first BTW session. Most of the time, a student is not familiar with the skill and is first introduced to it during our BTW session. Time to practice with parents between sessions is imperative for the teen to be successful with the next session’s objectives. We provide complete descriptions including diagrams and pictures of the skills we teach to support parents during their student’s practice time between sessions.
We introduce driving skills but we don’t have the time with your student for these skills to become habit – that happens with you. Together we can create a safe, responsible driver – for life!
Q. How long do I have to complete the BTW training?
A. You have 12 months from the issue date of your permit to complete the BTW portion of the course. This provides more than enough time to complete the course. We offer contract extensions for an additional fee should you require more time.
Q. Do you offer a practice drive test?
A. YES! You can schedule your drive test prep online just like your drive test. The drive test prep is an additional $50. The prep is designed to mimic the experience of taking the drive test, but completing a different route. You will be given direct feedback regarding what needs improvement as well as what you are doing really well. We will also share with you what constitues an automatic fail and answer any questions you have regarding the test or driving.
Q. When can the drive test be taken?
A. Colorado requires the instruction permit to be held for a full 12 months. The earliest the CO drive test can be taken is the issue date of the instruction permit in the current year. IE: If permit issue date is 5/1/13, the earliest the drive test can be taken is 5/1/14.
Q. Do you do BTW training on Sunday?
A. Yes! We offer drive sessions Monday through Sunday, 4 times a day. If you live in Castle Rock, we will pick your teen up at home and their high school. If you live in Highlands Ranch, Parker, Centennial, Greenwood Village, parts of Aurora and Littleton, we will pick up and drop off at your teen’s high school. We don’t want to make the process of getting your drivers license a hassle, so we try to make everything as convenient as possible by coming to you, instead of you coming to us.
We also offer online scheduling, which makes it quick and easy to pick your sessions!
Q. Do you do winter BTW training?
A. Yes. We conduct BTW training all year long. We do reserve the right to cancel BTW training when the weather and/or road conditions become too dangerous. We monitor weather and road conditions continually thru our sources and will usually let parents and students know at least two hour prior to the scheduled BTW session if it is being cancelled due to weather or road conditions.