Driver Education FAQ
Why Safe Driver Driver's Education? Who teaches the classes?
Safe Driver Drivers Education was created by Chris Rolwes in 2009. We think that Safe Driver Ed sets itself apart from other driving schools in that we work hard to make sure that classroom instruction is consistent with behind the wheel instruction. Unlike some other driving schools in the area, we allow parents and students to sign up for the driving portion of the class when it fits their schedule. We serve students in the Cedar Rapids area but students from surrounding school districts are welcome to enroll. Mr. Rolwes teaches the classroom portion of the course while Mr. Randy Mathews, Mr. Andrew Tower, Mr. Brad Tower, Mr. Marv Trachta, and Mr. Max Matthais will teach the driving portion of the course. Mr. Rolwes will also drive with students when needed or requested. We are locally owned, fully licensed, and insured. Safe Driver Driver's Education is currently offering classes in the greater Cedar Rapids area. Any student between 14 to 20 years old with a valid instructional permit is eligible to take this course.
How do I access the online class? What other information should I know about scheduling driving lessons and finishing the course?
HERE you can access the information needed to create an account in the Canvas system. This works best if you can email the link to get to canvas to your school district email address. PLEASE do not start this class until Mr. Rolwes tells you to begin.
You will also find information about scheduling driving times and what you need to do to finish the course.
What is classroom instruction like?
In compliance with the Iowa Department of Transportation, we're offering a hybrid format during 2023 blending in-person and online instruction. There will be 2-3 in-person sessions where Mr. Rolwes will be leading the class through some of the key concepts that are essential to becoming a safe driver. There will also be presentations from A.B.A.T.E. of Iowa involving sharing the road with other roadway users. The Cedar Rapids Police Department will also present to the student's essential information pertaining to impaired driving and law enforcement. If the schedule permits, students will have the opportunity to listen to Jay Cassill of Cassill Motors discuss how to purchase and maintain a car.
How are classroom absences handled?
Any absence from class will have to made up during the next session during the evening/day that the specific material is covered. Absences will be limited to no more than two times per course. Please communicate with Mr. Rolwes if your student is going to be absent. Unexcused absences will result in being dropped from the class without refund. Students will not receive their certificates until they have passed the classroom and driving portions of the course. If students are going to miss a scheduled driving lesson they should contact Mr. Rolwes far in advance of this absence. All of this will be discussed the first night of class.
What is the policy regarding cell phones and other electronic devices?
Students will be able to use their devices during breaks and sometimes during class. If excessive or inappropriate use of the device becomes a distraction Mr. Rolwes will warn the student of this. If your student needs to be reached during class please contact Mr. Rolwes at 573-6378.
Students will be unable to use their phones when not driving as Iowa state law says that students must have six hours of observation in addition to the six hours of driving. At anytime, Mr. Rolwes or the other instructors reserves the right to ask students to turn off their phones or other devices during the lesson Students will be asked to complete activities while observing the other student driving.
Do you provide a waiver of fees for students on free or reduced lunches?
An application for free and reduced lunch must be on file with the Cedar Rapids Community School District. IMPORTANT: You must request that your student's free and reduced lunch status can be shared with Safe Driver Drivers Education. If this is not done, you may lose your spot in the class. If you have questions about this, please contact the CRCSD at 558-1157
Please contact Mr. Rolwes at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 319-573-6378 prior to registering for the course. Please share the student's name and that you are requesting a FULL or PARTIAL waiver of fees.
Mr. Rolwes will contact the CRCSD to check on your student's free or reduced lunch status. If approved by the District, he will contact you to tell you to register for the course of your choice.
If the student is NOT approved, you will need to contact the school district so this information can be shared with him. (Please see above)
Please go to www.safedriversed.com to register for the course. You may register for summer/fall classes starting May 1st, 2023
If you or your student qualifies for free lunch and attends any school in the Cedar Rapids Community School District you will qualify for a waiver of $400.00. You will be required to pay $25.00 to take drivers education with Safe Driver Driver's Education. This payment can be made by cash, check, or credit card.
If you or you or your student qualifies for reduced lunch and attends any school in the Cedar Rapids Community School District the student will qualify for a waiver of $166.00 You will be required to pay $259.00 to take driver's education with Safe Driver Driver's Education. This payment can be made by cash, check, or credit card.
This discount is only available for the full instruction drivers education program. This discount IS NOT available for the Parent Assist Program
Please CLICK HERE for more information.
Do you offer adult driver education?
At this time, we are NOT offering adult drivers education.
What does driver education with Safe Driver Driver's Education include?
Each student will receive classroom instruction and 6 hours of behind-the-wheel instruction. Students will receive individualized feedback after each lesson and will be asked to identify strengths and weaknesses. Students will be asked to keep a driving log when driving outside of class. In addition to this instruction they will receive:
- 240 minutes of substance abuse and distracted driving education
- a minimum of 20 minutes of railroad crossing safety.
- instruction relating to organ donation under the Uniform Anatomical Gift Act.
Safe Driver Drivers Education L.L.C. is fully licensed by the Iowa Department of Transportation and is bonded and insured.
What is the refund policy?
Students can schedule for a future session if a conflict arises. A full refund can be given if a student cancels before the first day of class. If a student withdraws from the class after the first session, only a maximum of $200 will be refunded. Please contact Mr. Rolwes at 319-573-6378 if to request a refund.
Behind the Wheel
When can we sign up for driving lessons?
Once the class is closed and we know how many students are in the class, we will open up the scheduling portion of the site approximately two weeks before the start of the class. Students/parents are then able to sign up for lessons in two hour increments. There must be two students in the car at all times with each student driving for one hour and observing for one hour.
What is the behind-the-wheel instruction like?
Students will drive for one hour for each lesson and must have a minimum of six hours of instruction. There must be at least two students in the car for each lesson. Students will switch every half-hour. Lessons will include:
- Basic car control including backing into streets and driveways.
- Residential driving
- Downtown and city driving working on lane changes, turning, and pedestrian observance.
- One Way Streets, parallel parking, and head-in parking.
- Two lane highway and country road driving.
- Interstate and highway driving
- We will do a drive to Iowa City where we will drive around downtown I.C.
- Trip planning. During our last drive students are responsible for planning a route.
- Instruction in basic vehicle maintenance.
- Students are required to log an additional 5 hours of instruction outside of the driving time they will complete with the instructor.
Students are expected to be on time for their driving lessons. If a student misses a driving lesson without notifying Mr. Rolwes they will be charged $35.
Where do we meet the instructor for driving lessons?
If your lesson is right after school, please come to room 120 to see Mr. Rolwes and he will direct you where to find your instructor. On days we DON'T have school, please meet us in the back parking lot next to the Jefferson tennis courts. DON"T FORGET YOUR PERMIT!!
Can the driving lessons end at home or another location?
It is recommended by the Iowa Department of Transportation that there be at least two students in the car at all times. Both students will need to be dropped off at this location. It is always best if our drives can stop or end at an agreed upon location. In the summer that will most likely be where the class is held.
What is the procedure for students having to drive with the Department of Transportation?
Some students will have to drive with the D.O.T. if they fail to perform up to the instructor's expectations. If this is the case, students will receive a certificate that states: "Must drive with D.O.T". Mr. Rolwes will communicate with the parents of the student if this is going to be a possibility. If students are doing additional driving outside of the driving they are doing for the course they will most likely pass the course. If students fail to complete the classroom portion of the course, they may be required to do a test drive with the Iowa D.O.T.