DRIVING INSTRUCTORS TRAINING REQUIREMENTS
Being a professional Driving Instructor can provide a lot of satisfaction to people who really want to make a difference for others. Qualifying to become a California DMV-licensed Driving Instructor requires the applicant to be at least 21 years of age with no felonies or moral convictions, he or she must provide proof of high school graduation, and pass a physical examination which includes vision, blood pressure, heart rate, etc.
To apply for a Driving Instructor position and obtain a DMV Occupational License, you must first be sponsored by a licensed California driving school (a school that intends to employ you as a Driving Instructor). This employing school is responsible to educate you in all of the phases necessary to be a Driving Instructor. This includes but is not limited to: (1) rules of the road, (2) School advertising limitations, (3) DMV forms and certificates, (4) maintenance and legal requirements for training vehicles, (5) licensing and renewal laws, (6) continuation education requirements, (7) certificate logs and age requirements, (8) techniques of teaching, (9) equipment needed for classroom and vehicle training.
Our entire training program involves 60 hours, including 30 hours of classroom time and 30 hours in the vehicle. We teach our specific approach to layering in the different aspects of driving step-by-step, techniques for teaching turns, steps for lane changes, basic maneuvers like backing and parking, freeway speed and spacing, freeway vision and driving strategies, city vision patterns, space management skills, and much more.
This 60 hour program requires between 4 and 6 weeks to complete. The sponsoring driving school normally charges applicants for this training. The training quality and cost vary from one driving school to another. Some schools also allow the instructor to work off the cost once employed while other schools charge up to $2,500 for an instructor's training program.
After the 60 hours of instructor training has been completed, an Occupational License may be obtained after the applicant goes to the DMV and provides a fingerprint scan, submits an application for a background check, pays a $35 fee, and passes a written test.
For some driving schools, this initial instructor training is only the beginning, because they require monthly training sessions which involve advanced teaching techniques and problem solving methods. There is also an annual seminar given by the Driving School Association of California which many schools require all of their instructors to attend. This seminar covers the latest laws, DMV and CHP speakers, and new ideas on teaching.
In our 25 years of experience we have found that instructors who are the most successful and satisfied come from a wide variety of work experience, truly enjoy helping others, are between the ages of 25-60, possess sales ability, and have excellent communication skills.
If you are already an experienced, licensed DMV driving instructor from California or any other state and are seeking employment, we may interview and hire instructors from age 21 and older on an as-needed basis. However, we require a 6 hour RETRAINING program to ensure that each new hire will use the same terminology, teach our curriculum in the prescribed manner, and learn our general office and operating procedures.
Driving instructors have the choice of either supplying their own training vehicle, which must be safety-inspected and includes insurance and work supplies, or using a company-provided vehicle at a different pay scale. Please contact our Business Office for details.