Overhaul of driving lessons and tests will see licenses become more expensive
The Roemer Committee has advised a complete overhaul of driving lessons and tests in the Netherlands, which should reduce the risk of exam fraud and poor teaching but would also see it become significantly more expensive to obtain a driving license.
Changes would see cost of driving lessons rise from 45 euros to 60 euros
According to the Van Autorijles naar Autorijonderwijs (“From driving lessons to driving education”) report, the Roemer Committee instructs the Dutch government to reconstruct driving education in the Netherlands. The report states that students should take several theoretical and practical tests in order to obtain their license, that instructors should be expected to meet much stricter requirements, and that an inspectorate must be established to oversee the quality of education.
These reforms would see the cost of driving lessons and tests increase significantly. Not great news for anyone hoping to learn to drive, as a recent ranking listed the Netherlands as the second most expensive country in the world for the combined cost of practical and theory exams. The changes would see the average lesson price increase from 45 euros to 60 euros, plus the added costs for the additional theory and practical exams (37 euros and 120 euros respectively) as well as a further 36 euros to cover setting up a driving school authority.
Issues with driving education in the Netherlands
The report identifies a number of issues with the driving industry, including:
- A low pass rate for practical exams (41 percent)
- No (official) requirements for driving lessons
- Aggressive behaviour towards examiners
- Lessons aimed at passing the practical exam, not becoming a competent driver
- Theory exams are “stolen” to train and prepare students
In order to combat these issues, the report recommends introducing additional exams. Instead of just one theory and one practical exam, students would have to pass a theory exam before starting lessons, with a second exam covering hazard perception would be taken at a later stage. Driving instructors would also oversee interim practical exams.
The driving school will be expected to establish a curriculum and keep better records of students’ progress in order to ensure instructors know where improvements need to be made. The new independent authority would not only serve as an inspectorate, but would also set requirements for driving schools and instructors.