Myself and 3 other retired teachers work for a local Driver Education company that took over when Twin Lakes decided not to offer driver education any more because of the expense of the program. The state of Indiana is one of a hand full of states that no longer requires or provides money to local schools for education credit for a LIFETIME SKILL. When I taught in South Carolina every student was scheduled into driver education. The school was a larger school and had 6 driver education instructors, also taught other courses, BUT the state provided funds for this. Indiana no longer sees the need of driver education in the school system but encourages schools to drop their programs and let outside companies take this over. Last I was aware of over half of the school corporations in the state have dropped their summer DE programs. We have laws that if a student takes DE he/she can get their license 6 months earlier BUT I have found at least half of our local students just get their permit and wait the extra 6 months to get their license. Meanwhile we have students from Frontier, Tri County, West Central, Lafayette, Logansport, Rensselaer, Winamac, Pioneer, North White, Delphi, and Carroll that come to us because we are open year round and can meet their needs as several of these schools only offer DE in the summer OR have dropped their programs all together. The next big problem, and I take my hat off to Chris Meeks at Rensselaer, is that the state now encourages students to take the classroom portion of DE Online. The company I work for offers the classroom opportunity but we can not get anyone to sign up for the classroom. Having looked at that program I do not believe it is near as good as what Chris is doing. All the small things he does, outside speakers/discussion/examples, etc., are much more effective that an online class a student can do in a couple of weeks with no verbal feedback. It is no wonder Indiana continues to be one of the leaders nationally in student accidents. We still require 6 hours in the car with and instructor and the 50 hour log with parents that to many just sign off on. I don't know what the answer is other than bringing a LIFETIME SKILL back into the school setting or changing the laws where students must complete a DE course. I also believe moving the age back to 17 is a good thing to look at and if you do not complete a DE course then wait until you are 18 to get a license. I know of to many situations here and in other local communities where parents tried to teach their children to drive while they themselves had forgotten many rules of the road but thought they could handle it, only to see their child be involved in a deadly wreck. These are my opinions. Disagree if you wish. I have said to much.