Driver Education training consists of two separate courses: Theory Highway Safety and Behind-the-Wheel Training. Anyone 15 years of age or older may complete the Theory Highway Safety portion by taking the Online Theory Course. After students receive their permit, they can take Behind-the-Wheel Training driving lessons. Students are not required to take either part of driver education in the state of Pennsylvania before obtaining a license; however, it is recommended and may make you eligible for auto insurance discounts (check with your insurance agent). It is also recommended that students take the theory portion first so that they can learn about safe driving practices before starting Behind-the-Wheel Training. If a student takes both components of the driver education course, has had their permit for six months and has completed 65 hours of driving practice, they can complete their driver’s testing exam at one of our CCIU Driver Testing Centers for a discounted rate (the driver’s testing exam can also be completed at a local DMV location).
Online Theory Course
This course was developed by the CCIU and is taught by a Pennsylvania-certified teacher. It is an independent study course for anyone 15 years of age or older and students are expected to work independently with limited teacher interaction. It takes approximately 30 hours to complete, and students will have one year (12 months) to complete the course. If approved by the student’s guidance counselor, he/she can receive .25 credit.
The main goal of this course is for students to acquire driver knowledge, including up-to-date safe driving and defensive driving techniques. Each concept is reinforced with study guides and movies, as well as outside resources. The Online Theory Course consists of 19 chapters and contains a quiz at the end of each chapter. Students must score 80% or higher on each quiz before moving on to the next chapter. In addition, students must score 80% or higher on the final exam in order to receive a certificate of completion.
For Downingtown Area School District students: a 40-hour course has been developed for Downingtown Area School District students. If approved by the student’s guidance counselor, they may earn .33 credit after successful completion. Students will have one year (12 months) to complete the course. Downingtown students who do not need or want the .33 credit can take the 30-hour course for $131.
Behind-the-Wheel Instruction will consist of six one-hour, on-the-road driving sessions covering a wide variety of road situations, conditions and driving skills. For students in Downingtown Area, Tredyffrin/Easttown or West Chester Area School Districts who opt to complete instruction during the school day, sessions will be split into eight, 45-minute lessons. Students will learn from one of our highly experienced driving instructors using a well-maintained vehicle from our fleet. All CCIU vehicles have automatic transmissions and dual braking systems.
Upon successful registration, you will be assigned to a CCIU driver education instructor who will work directly with you to schedule each lesson. There are designated local locations to meet the instructor for lessons and lessons can be scheduled at any time during the entire year. There may be a wait list for lessons and training will begin in the order of student sign-up.
Please note: a driver license or learner’s permit is required in order to begin Behind-the-Wheel Instruction. Please visit the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation's Driver and Vehicle Services website to obtain the physical examination or permit extensions forms and the drivers manual.
Health and Safety Plan
Each school entity must create a Health and Safety Plan, which will serve as the local guidelines for all instructional and non-instructional school reopening activities. The health and safety guidelines for Behind-the-Wheel training are highlighted in the Phased School Reopening Health and Safety Plan.
Pennsylvania's Young Driver Law
Pennsylvania licenses young drivers through a three-stage program, reflecting the driver’s gradual progression in skill, experience, and decision-making ability. Learn more about Pennsylvania's Young Driver Law. Parents are strongly encouraged to continuously monitor the driving practices of their teenagers, even after they are issued a license. Teenagers often become careless, reckless and over-confident within 12 months of receiving their license. In order to monitor careless driving habits that may have developed, parents are encouraged to have their teenager drive them to their destination occasionally.