AAA study shows teens benefit from driver's ed class

HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - If your teen driver hasn't taken driver's ed yet, you may want to think about getting them registered. New research from AAA's Foundation for Traffic Safety shows teens who take driver's ed are 4 percent less likely to get in an accident.

Another statistic shows teens who take driver's ed have almost 40 percent fewer traffic offense convictions than teens who don't take it.

Teens who complete driver's education scored higher on the driving exam and had more knowledge than teens who didn't.

The class used to be a rite of passage for teens coming-of-age waiting for the freedom of the driver's license. To get a license under the age of 17, teens have to take the course, but because of funding cuts in schools, the course is being offered less and less.

It is offered in most Horry County high schools, but parents have to pay for the course.

Tim Renfrow teaches the class at Socastee High School.

"In our school system, it's $250 to take [driver's ed], it used to be $50," Renfrow explained. Students who qualify for free and reduced lunch get it at a reduced rate.

Still, most people think it's worth it.

"If we don't teach them, they'll wait until they turn of age, which I think is 17 now, and then they'll get their license," Renfrow continues. "But it's important to me because I've got to face those kids everyday when I'm riding down the road, my kids have got to."

If your kid's school doesn't offer drivers ed, there are a number of private SCDMV-approved courses in the Pee Dee and Grand Strand.

Fees for the course may vary. Find the list of approved private courses here:

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