DRIVER EDUCATION OPTIONSfor Iowa Homeschooled Students
THREE OPTIONS:You have three choices when deciding how to teach your home educated child how to drive. See below to explore the options.
A law passed by the 2013 Iowa Legislature will allow parents who homeschool their children to teach driver education under prescribed circumstances. These are the required 3 steps to complete this process.
Step 1: Parent Completes and Submits Application
A parent who wants to provide parent-taught driver education must complete the application to serve as a teaching parent and submit it to the Office of Driver Services. (If you're having trouble downloading the application form from the DOT website, click here to access a PDF version that we have created.) As part of the application, a parent must select an a course approved by the Iowa Department of Transportation (DOT).
Please note that the DOT currently maintains that the first step in parent-taught driver education is to receive DOT “approval” of an application to serve as a teaching parent. The DOT is currently not accepting either course instruction or driving time logged before “approval” of the teaching parent.
Applicants will need to be providing Private Instruction under Iowa Code 299A and either:
- have filed CPI Form A at their school district for the current and previous year (for those using CPI Option 1 or CPI Option 2 with Opt-In Reporting)
- have filed a NICHE Optional Report CPI Option 2 with Opt-Out at their school district or sent it to the DOT with the application to serve as a teaching parent.
- have filed a NICHE IPI Response Form at their school district or sent it to the DOT with the application to serve as a teaching parent,
When a parent receives “approval” to serve as a teaching parent for parent-taught driver education, the DOT will send an information packet, which includes the driving log form needed.
- Possesses a valid instruction permit
- Is age 14-21
- Is in custody & under control of the teaching parent
TEACHING PARENT REQUIREMENTS
- Provided private instruction under Iowa Code 299A to the student the previous year (12 calendar months previous to providing Parent Taught Driver Education)
- Possesses a valid Iowa driver's license
- Has a clear driving record for the previous two years
Step 2: Parent & Student Completes Course Requirements
After receiving the information packet from the Iowa DOT, the teaching parent may purchase course material directly from the course provider and begin instruction.
When the student successfully completes an approved course, including required classroom and behind-the-wheel instruction, the parent submits to the Iowa DOT the Application for Parent-Taught Driver Education Program Completion form (provided in the teaching parent approval packet). The following items must be included with the application:
√ The name of the approved course completed
√ Copies of completed written tests
√ Copy of driving log
The program completion form and additional items are submitted to:
Iowa Department of Transportation
Office of Driver Services
P.O. Box 9204
Des Moines, IA 50306
The Iowa DOT will review the submitted materials. If requirements are met, the Iowa DOT will send a notification by email and add certification of course completion to student's online driving record. If the course completion material is unsatisfactory, the Iowa DOT will send a denial notification explaining the reason it was denied.
Step 3: Student Obtains Driving Privileges
After receiving notification that the course completion certification has been added to the student's driving record, the student and parent may schedule a driving test at any driver’s license station. The student and parent should bring the following items with them to the driver’s license issuance site:
√ Proof of insurance (required for the driving test)
√ Student’s instructional driving permit
√ Parent's Iowa driver's license. If the parent does not accompany the minor to the driver’s license site, the student must bring a notarized parental consent form.
√ $8 for required license fees
(You may also bring a copy of the emailed certification notice of course completion, but, again, that certification is added to the student's online driving record and is available to the driver license station staff.)
Iowa public school districts are required by law to provide driver education programs to all resident students up to age 21. Students do not need to be enrolled -- or dual-enrolled -- in the public school district in order to access public school driver education programs. As with other driver education options, the student must hold a valid Iowa learner's permit.
Homeschooled students are to be charged the same fee that regularly enrolled students are charged.
Parents who want to enroll their children in a public school driver education program should notify the school district well in advance -- preferably in writing (email correspondence is acceptable) to maintain a record of the request.
If a child has been open enrolled into another school district, that district is responsible for providing a public school driver education program, if desired. The resident district can provide access to a driver education program, but is not required by law to do so. The open enrollment receiving district is required by law to provide driver education instruction to the open enrolled student, if it is desired.
Homeschooling parents may also utilize private accredited driver education programs for their students. As with other driver education options, the student must hold a valid Iowa learner's permit.
To view the most current list available of private driver education programs in Iowa, click here.