Keep things professional

So much has changed since you took your driving test that if you try to teach your children to drive you’ll probably tell them all sorts of things that you shouldn’t. That’s why it’s so important to use the services of a trained approved driving instructor (ADI) to do it instead. ADIs are heavily regulated and rigorously assessed, to maintain standards and with the right tutor your child will find the whole learning process more enjoyable, easier and ultimately cheaper too.

Tracking down that ideal tutor can be tricky but a good start is to home in one who has signed up The Honest Truth. ADIs affiliated to this national scheme focus on attitudes as well as ability when coaching new drivers, and it’s by taking this dual approach that your child will much better understand the consequences of making a bad decision when driving.

The Honest Truth

Set up after three young people were killed in a car crash in 2009, The Honest Truth is a national road safety initiative that brings together the fire & rescue services, the police, representatives from the local authority and community safety along with approved driving instructors. 

Until the arrival of The Honest Truth, ADIs focused pretty much exclusively on how to drive. So you’d be technically competent at test time, knowing how to negotiate a roundabout or turn in the road, but you probably wouldn’t know all about the dangers of mobile phone use at the wheel or the consequences of drink driving. The Honest Truth set out to change that.

My Honest Truth driving instructor gave me so much confidence and inspired me to learn how to be a great driver - not just get through my test.
— Hayely, learner driver

With more than 2000 THT instructors nationwide including around 150 in Staffordshire, there’s bound to be one near you. A regular driving instructor focuses largely on the mechanics of driving; controlling the car, reading the road, planning ahead. But a THT instructor also spends time explaining the importance of attitude and consequences in the driving process. That’s because having the right attitude is at least as important as having decent co-ordination or awareness.

Three key reasons to choose a THT instructor:

  1. They won’t focus just on the mechanical skills but will also teach essential life skills that new drivers need when first driving on their own.

  2. They're committed to promoting road safety through effective education, enabling new drivers to make the right decisions when it matters.

  3. By learning about ‘The Honest Truth’ new drivers are given the confidence to challenge inappropriate behaviour by passengers and make the small changes necessary to stay safe.
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Staffordshire-based Craig Polles is an Honest Truth ADI. He comments: “Many of the people I teach are naive about the potential consequences of their actions, whether that’s mobile phone use, drink, drugs, speeding or wearing a seatbelt. Everyone thinks they’re an excellent driver and that it won’t happen to them. Even those who think they could be involved in a crash don’t think about all of the knock-on effects, including those for friends and family, potentially for years or even decades. 

“Many young people’s lives revolve around being active. They like sports, partying and outdoor pursuits, and a car crash could take that away at a stroke. But that’s just the start; they may be unable to work or hold down a relationship plus their families could become carers for the rest of their lives. And all becasuse of a moment of madness. This is what a THT driving instructor impresses upon their pupils; the massive potential impact of a driving mistake”.