Manila Teachers partylist Rep. Virgilio Lacson has proposed the inclusion of the Continuing Driver’s Education Program in the senior high school curriculum to instill national road safety awareness among the youth and create a “harmonious” road culture and safe environment for all.
The House leader said to ensure the safety of all road users and pedestrians, the government should implement a quality educational program that will raise awareness among its students relative to road safety, etiquette, and rules.
“While the root cause of road accidents and casualties is difficult to identify because of its diverse and multi-faceted nature, road accidents and injuries can be prevented through proper education and continuing training of our road users on road safety and traffic regulations,” Lacson said in filing House Bill No. 7092, the proposed Driver’s Education Act of 2020.
The chairperson of the House Committee on Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprise Development said that government data shows that traffic-related accidents and vehicular incidents in the country are attributable to human error and negligence.
“The bill seeks to develop our students’ knowledge on traffic rules and regulations, and on the safe operation of motor vehicles pursuant to international road and traffic safety standards. Through the program, students will develop their operational skills as responsible motorists, hone their individual understanding and obedience to traffic rules and regulations, generate appreciation and recognition of consequences of road and vehicular-related accidents caused by irresponsible driving methods, and driving under influence of substances,” he added.
HB 7092 provides that the Continuing Driver’s Education Program shall be taught to senior high school students aged 17 and above in all public and private schools.
The classes will be handled by a professional driving instructor who is qualified and accredited by the Technical Education Skills and Development Authority (TESDA) with valid Professional Driver’s License issued by the Land Transportation Office (LTO), it said.
The measure tasks the Department of Education (DepEd) to adopt course standards for the program including, but not limited to, knowledge on the operation and maintenance of motor vehicles, comprehensive study on road traffic rules and regulations, introduction to road transportation laws, psychology of driving (correct eye usage, defensive driving), machine troubleshooting skills, and comparative analysis and course study on international traffic and road safety policies, regulations, and standards.
Lacson said the program entails 30 hours of classroom instruction.
He said the student driver who will successfully pass the levels of course examination will receive a certificate of completion at the end of the course.
“The Continuing Driver’s Education program’s benefits go beyond the classroom as it will equip each student with the necessary skills and knowledge to pass the national driver’s license exam and acquire a driver’s license. With driving now being a life skill, the program’s advantage extends even as far as giving students an edge in finding livelihood,” the House leader said.
HB 7092 mandates the DepEd Secretary, in coordination with the Secretary of the Department of Transportation (DOTr) and the Secretary of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) to issue the implementing rules and regulations of the proposed Act.
The bill provides that the amount necessary for the implementation of the proposed Act shall be charged to the appropriations of the DepEd. Thereafter, such sum as may be necessary for its continuous implementation shall be included in the annual General Appropriations Act (GAA), it said.