Just because your teen has taken a driver’s education course or completed specific supervised hours doesn’t mean he or she is necessarily ready to drive alone. Follow these tips on what to look for to determine if your teen is ready from The Allstate Foundation:
- Good judgment and the ability to resist peer pressure
- Willingness to follow rules – both state driving laws and your household rules
- Self-assurance behind the wheel, not excessively nervous or over-confident
- Understanding of what it means to be a safe driver
Research indicates teens differentiate between "safe" and "good" drivers: "safe” drivers follow all the rules, while “good” drivers can "handle" driving under reckless circumstances.
If that’s the case, tell your teen it’s not that he or she can’t drive alone at all – it’s that he or she can’t drive alone yet. Stress that this is a safety issue, not a control issue. And keep practicing!
Continue to monitor your teen’s driving, and go along for the ride sometimes to ensure your teen hasn’t picked up any bad driving habits or isn’t shirking safety. Keep referring to your Parent-Teen Driving Agreement and reassess driving rules, privileges and restrictions as your teen’s experience grows.
Find more information at Teen Driver Source.