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Space still available for driver's-education class

By Curt Yeomans

cyeomans@news-daily.com

There is still room for up to 15 Clayton County residents to sign up for the Safe America Foundation's next two-week, driver's-education course, which is scheduled to begin Monday at Jonesboro High School, according to the executive who oversees the courses for the organization.

Mary Lou Pagano, Safe America's executive vice president of drivers training services, said the non-profit, safety-awareness organization will offer an after-school, driver's-education course Monday through Friday, Nov. 30-Dec. 11, at Jonesboro High School, which is located at 7728 Mt. Zion Blvd., in Jonesboro.

The course, which includes 30 hours in a classroom and six hours behind the wheel of a car, costs $365, and is scheduled to meet each weekday from 4 p.m., to 7 p.m., according to the Safe America Foundation's web site. There are four scholarships left for students who need help paying for the course, Pagano said.

The course is only open to Clayton County residents who are at least 15 years old and possess a learner's permit, she added. "They'll be prepared to get on the road as a young, new driver," she said. "The more educated they are on the rules for driving, the more likely they are to be safer on the road."

Pagano said that under state law, 16-year-olds are required to complete a driver's-education course to obtain a driver's license. The law, known as Joshua's Law, went into effect in 2007, according to the Georgia Department of Driver Services' web site.

During the classroom-instruction period, students will learn about Georgia's driving laws, including "the basic rules of the road," as well as vehicle maintenance, vehicle insurance, and a state-mandated alcoho-and drug-awareness program, Pagano said.

"At the completion of the classroom portion, students will receive a certificate," she said.

Pagano added that during the six hours the youths spend behind the steering wheel of a driver's-education car, they will receive one-on-one instruction on street driving, and highway driving.

Students, who wish to apply for the four remaining scholarships, can go online to do so, Pagano said. The scholarship is for $50, out of the $150 that covers the classroom portion of the course, she said. She also said that as part of the application, Safe America requires students to submit an essay explaining their interest in driving, and what kind of driver they want to become by taking part in the class.

For more information on the course, call the Safe America Foundation at (770) 973-7233.

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On the net:

Safe America Foundation:

www.safeamerica.org