By Jana Rhodes / Posted February 2, 2016
Understanding the Impact Texas Teen Drivers Program (ITTD)
Michelle and her son were excited for his Texas driving skills exam. He had practiced diligently and was ready to go. However, when they arrived at the DMV, they received an unexpected surprise; before her son could take his exam, he had to attend a training session on distracted driving.
Many Texas parents are just now learning about a new requirement in Texas that became effective on September 1, 2015. The IMPACT Texas Teen Drivers Program (ITTD) is an eight part video that explains the dangers of distracted driving to teens with real life stories. It is a new prerequisite to the drive skills examination, added as a preventive measure to reduce deadly habits such as using their cell phone while driving. The actual video length is a total of two hours; however, if you arrive at your appointment without an ITTD Certificate of Completion, you may have some extra wait time while you watch the ITTD videos on site.
“We didn’t even know he had to go through it until he arrived for his appointment, and then it took about four hours,” said Michelle.
So what is this new program, and how do you take the steps to make sure your teen is compliant and prepared to avoid a long appointment to take their exam?
The Texas Department of Public Safety developed the IMPACT Texas Teen Drivers Program (ITTD) tITTDo increase awareness and education that will save lives. The ITTD training videos are required for teens under the age of 18, as an add-on to their required drivers education course. Those who are 18-24 and choose to complete a drivers education course must also view the ITTD videos to fulfill the education requirement. The course can be taken online at IMPACT Texas Teen Drivers website or at a Third Party Skills Testing (TPST) authorized school. There are no fees to take this course.
The ITTD program is a series of eight videos that educate teens about the risks of driving while distracted by cell phone use or attempts to multitask instead of focusing on the road. The aim of the videos is to influence, not condemn teen drivers. The program theme is about “good kid’s making poor choices” and includes state-specific statistics as well as impactful stories about tragic loss of life resulting from distracted driving. Teens are engaged with these details to help them determine what is “lethal.”
The ITTD hours are an additional requirement to the 32 hours the state requires for drivers education. However, the entire course does not have to be viewed in one setting. Once the ITTD Certificate of Completion is received, a printed copy must be taken to the drivers license office or TPST school.
The following steps to getting a drivers license in Texas will help you understand how the ITTD training fits into your teen’s entire training process.
Take a Teen Driver Education course in its entirety from one of the following:
Traditional drivers education course offered by a driver training school
Parent-taught driver education (PTDE)
Driver education offered in public schools
Receive a DE-964 for Teen Driver Education course
Watch the ITTD video(s) (2 hours long – 8 part video)
Receive the ITTD Certificate of Completion
Take Driving Skills Examination within 90 days of the ITTD Certificate of Completion date.
Receive a valid learner license (must be at least 15) and minimum of six months driving experience (download a driving log for easy tracking of hours).
The IMPACT Texas Teen Driving Program (ITTD) may help to save your teen’s life. If you are aware of the requirements and where to take the training, it will be a small but impactful part of their overall preparation for the road.
It is important to continue your teen’s driver education long after they receive their license. MOTOsafety allows you to coach your teen through the first years of driving to develop good driving habits and improve safety. Talk with your teen about using MOTOsafety to continue your parent-led training.
Texas Dept. of Public Safety:
Finding a Third Party Skill Testing )TPST) Program for Driver Skills Examination:
Licensed Driver Education Schools:
Public Schools that offer Driver Education:
Teen Driving Log Template MOTOsafety:
- Installs in seconds
- Rates driver performance
- Monitors safe driving behaviors
- Shows location in real time
- Generates alerts for speeding and more
- Signals unauthorized usage
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