30-Hour Classroom Training
The 30-hour classroom and 6 hour behind-the-wheel driving course is required for all new drivers. This is the groundwork for the beginning driver and provides the basis for becoming a safe driver. Students are encouraged to either obtain their Learnerís Permit before beginning the class, or shortly after classes begin. It is best for the new driver to begin driving as soon as possible after obtaining their Learnerís Permit with a qualified supervising parent, guardian or mentor to get a feel for the driving task, and what it entails.
The Classroom Portion
All students are required to attend an MVA approved 30 hour classroom instruction. The classes are 3 hours each, with a 15 minute break after the first hour and a half. There are a total of 10 classes, covering 8 different segments of the driving task. After each unit, students are tested to insure they have comprehension of the previous unit.
The key to easier learning, we have found, is participation. Lively discussions often ensue, and are encouraged, to make the classroom portion of the curriculum enjoyable and anything but boring. It also makes the time go by much quicker. Complimentary sodas, water and snacks are offered inside the classroom.
The Driving Portion, "Behind-the-Wheel"
Students are picked up at school, home, or at a place that is convenient for them.
Each student will be taken out for 3 drives, each lasting 2 hours, using an MVA approved vehicle supplied by the School. Students are closely observed, and carefully given pointers which will help them to realize what, if any, modifications need to be made.
We recommend completing the 6 hours of Behind-the-Wheel time with an RPDS instructor within 18 weeks of the conclusion of the 30-hour classroom instruction. Behind-the-Wheel hours MUST be completed within 2 years of completing the 30-hour classroom instruction. If hours are not completed within the 2-year window, the entire 30-hour course plus Behind-the-Wheel instruction must be retaken.
Calm, courteous instructors guide the student through each of a number of activities relating to safe driving, from secondary roads to freeways. One activity many students fear is PARALLEL PARKING. At Roland Park Driving School, they will absolutely be taught how do perform this maneuver. Every aspect of parallel parking will be shown and mastered. (Incidentally, 90% of the students I have taken to the MVA to take their driving test have passed). An employee of The MVA who administers the driving test says that approximately 50% of the students he tests, fail the first time, and the majority of those fail due to an inability to parallel park correctly.
If a student schedules a drive time and fails to keep the appointment, a $60 fee is charged, unless a 24-hour notice is given that they cannot make their scheduled drive time.
We all have busy lives, and as such there may come a time when a classroom session cannot be attended. Should this occur, a classroom session may be made up when that particular class is offered again. Usually, it will be repeated in 2-3 weeks. A student may miss a total of 4 classes. If more than that, they must re-register and repeat the entire 30 hour classroom session.
Maryland MVA approved Driver Education Curriculum includes the standard 30 hours of classroom instruction and 6 hours of on the road "drive time" all included in the tuition price of $375.