80% of a Driver

Coleman Brummel, Sports Editor


Sehome’s drivers-ed program has been teaching new student drivers since 2017. Students can sign up for drivers-ed to learn how to drive for free.

In the state of Washington, you need an 80% on the written test and driving test to obtain your license. I find this to not only be dangerous, but completely unacceptable. I believe that a student wanting to obtain their drivers license needs to get at least a 90% with corrections on the questions they missed along with being completely proficient on their driving test.

My requirements seem very harsh, but at 16-18 years old, you aren’t the professional driver you think you are. According to Science News for Students, the first 18 months a teen has his/her license, they are four times more likely to get in an accident than someone who is past the 18 month danger zone. After that period, teens are still twice as likely to be in an accident than an adult. If you break down the 40 question test, you need 32/40 questions to pass with an 80%. Not only can you miss eight questions, but don’t have to look at the questions you missed. Missing these eight questions and not having to correct and actually know the content is a massive issue because these drivers won’t understand all the rules of the road.

Another thing that I find wrong with the driving system is that you only need an 80% on the driving test to get a license. “You don’t even have to do the parallel parking section of the test to pass,” Evan McNamee (12) said. “I find it kind of disturbing that someone can fail a portion of the test and still pass.” Parallel parking is a very important skill to learn especially if you live in a city and the fact that students can just skip that part and still pass is unacceptable.

Although I have a problem with the system, it is not the fault of the driving schools. These schools are instructed on what to do by the DMV, making their opinions on the percent needed to pass completely obsolete. In the future, I believe that the DMV should take the amount of teenage lives at stake when making the requirements for someone to get their license.