Online Driver Education

Getting Started

***  IMPORTANT NOTE:  If you are NOT on a Driver Education Waiting List, and need more information about getting into a course, scroll down to the video titled  “Introduction to Driver’s Education” and view the video. We encourage you to watch the other videos as well and read through the rest of the Driver Education page.  If you do not know if you are on the Online Driver Ed Waiting List, contact Mountain Professionals at driversed@wresa.org and a Mountain Professionals staff member will assist you.  Mountain Professionals now manages the Online Driver Ed Waiting List. 

***Important Driver Education Updates for Students on a Waiting List***

  • January 30, 2023: WINTER 2023 WAITING LIST Update:  If you are on the Winter 2023 Waiting List and did not get into the Jan 27th course, you will get a chance to get into one of the next 2 courses, either the March 10th course or the April 21st course. Mountain Professionals sends us (WRESA) a list of students who are eligible to pay and register for the next course about 2-3 weeks prior to the beginning of the next course.
  • December 14, 2022:  2023 WAITING LIST Update:  If you are on the 2023 Waiting List, the next update email is scheduled to be sent by 5pm on February 15, 2023.
  •  In-Person CLASSES on Mountain Professionals website:  WRESA only offers the Online driver ed courses.  However, Mountain Professionals offers in-person classes at some of the schools. The in-person driver ed courses they are currently offering are listed on their website. To see in-person courses, go to https://mtnpro.com and click on “School Classes” on the top bar.  If you need more information about the courses, you can contact Mountain Professionals at 828-483-4708 or email them at info@mtnpro.com .
  •  Students on Previous Waiting Lists:  If you are on a previous  waiting list, such as the Fall 2022, Summer 2022, Spring 2022, or the Winter 2021/2022 Waiting List, and would still like to take a course, send an email to Richard Gabriel at rgabriel@wresa.org  and provide your name and the waiting list you were on and indicate that you would still like to get into a course. We will verify your status and help get  you into an online driving ed course. You DO NOT need to register onto another waiting list.  
  • General Note:  NEEDING DRIVERS:  Mountain Professionals is looking for more potential driving instructors. If you or anyone you know might be interested in becoming a Driving Instructor, contact Mountain Professionals at 828-483-4708 for more information on the certification process. Unfortunately, we are seeing this shortage throughout our state and nationally.

 

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Introduction to Driver’s Education Details:  3 Options for Taking a Course

  1. Face-to-Face Course:  This is the preference for most students and families. Your school should have more information regarding class dates and times. Ask in the school’s main office or ask the driver’s education school contact. You can also go to Mountain Professionals  website and click on “School Classes” to see some of the face-to-face courses currently being offered.
  2.  WRESA Online Course: This option was created to serve students who experience conflicts due to extra-curricular activities or after school jobs that prevented them from attending face to face classes at the school site. (When the Covid pandemic occurred, face-to-face classes were not available, so many students chose to take the online option.)  Driver Ed courses offered through WRESA are completely ONLINE using pre-recorded videos and take 5 weeks to complete. There are a certain number of units due at the end of each week, and the students can work around their schedules to complete the work for that week. As long as students have a computer with internet access, they will be able to work on their assignments. Teachers monitor the students’ progress and are available to answer questions related to the content. If you want to take the online course, scroll down and watch the video “I want to take the online class through WRESA”  and check out the information following the video.
  3. Virtual “Live” Online Course:  This option for taking an online course is with WNC Driving School.  They periodically offer a 30-hour virtual course where you will need to be online at specific times, with most classes meeting online at 6:00pm on most school days. As long as students have a computer with internet access, they will be able to work on their assignments and attend the virtual classes. Visit their website for more information. 

Please check our frequently asked questions section at the end of the page.

 

Details regarding Steps in the Driver’s Education Process

1) 30 hours of Classroom Instruction:   Students can either take a face-to-face course at their school, the WRESA online driver ed course, or they can take a course through a private driving company.  If students take the WRESA online driver ed course, students/parents will need to complete the RIP form and submit it to Mountain Professionals either while the student is taking the online course or upon completion of the online course, but not PRIOR to taking the course. The student will not be added to the Driving Instructor’s list to be scheduled for driving until the RIP form has been received by Mountain Professionals and verified.

2) 6 hours of Driving Instruction:  Mountain Professionals handles the Driving Portion of driver education for most of the online driver ed students. From the time Mountain Professionals sends the student and parent an email verifying that the RIP form is complete and that the information has been sent to the Driving Instructor, it is currently taking about 60 to 120 days for the Driving Instructor to call the student to schedule the driving.

3) Apply for a Learner’s Permit at the DMV:  Students must take the Driver’s Education Certificate (which students receive after completing the 30 hours of Classroom instruction and the 6 hours of driving instruction)  and the Driving Eligibility Certificate (which students receive from the school which indicates that the student is in good academic standing), to the DMV to apply for a Learner’s Permit.

***Note that homeschool students will need to apply online for the Driving Eligibility Certificate.  Go to the NC DOA “Student Driving Info” for more information.

Choosing the WRESA “Online” driver education option: Important Information Prior to Registering

  • Driver’s Education Waiting ListGetting onto a DE Waiting List for online driver ed courses does not cost anything. The DE Waiting List does not register you for a course. However, it is the first step in getting a student into an online driver ed course. When a student is on the waiting list and a course is available that the student is eligible to take, an email will be sent to the “Contact Email” in the student’s registration with more information on registering and paying for the course.
  • Contact Email:  It is very important to provide a Contact Email that you check regularly. The Contact Email will be used to notify you about updates such as when a course is available. In most cases, it is best to use a parent email since we have found that parents usually complete the official registration and pay for the online driver ed course. If the student is entering the information, it is best to enter your parent’s email or a student personal email that you check regularly. It is highly recommended NOT to us a school email, since often school system will block incoming emails.
  • Check for Updates:We recommend checking the WRESA Driver Ed website page and your email for updates about once a week.  Be sure to check your SPAM, Trash, Promotion and other folders where suspected junk email might have been placed.  If you are expecting an email and cannot locate it, contact Richard Gabriel at rgabriel@wresa.org 
  • Cost When you receive the email to register and pay for a course, note that it costs $65 for the online driver ed course, payable by credit card.  The registration fee is non-refundable and non-transferable; please be sure you can complete the requirements during the times specified for the course prior to registering.
  • Course type and Duration:  The Driver Ed courses offered on the WRESA website are completely ONLINE using pre-recorded videos and take 5 weeks to complete. There are a certain number of units due at the end of each week, and the students can work around their schedules to complete the work for that week. A student needs a computer/laptop/tablet with internet access to be able to complete the work assignments for the course. Phones do not work well with the course platform. An instructor will run the course and  help the students navigate through the course.  The instructor will also send out weekly student progress reports to the students and parents.
  • Eligibility:  WRESA online driver ed courses are only open to students who live in the WRESA service area, which includes the following counties/school systems: Asheville City, Buncombe, Cherokee Central, Cherokee County, Clay, Graham, Haywood, Henderson, Jackson, Macon, Madison, McDowell, Mitchell, Polk, Rutherford, Swain, Transylvania, and Yancey. 

    ***Note #1: Jackson and Haywood students must use a NC commercial driving school for the 6 hours of driving instruction which will include an additional fee.  Also, students in Cherokee Central, Cherokee County, Clay, Graham, Macon, and Swain counties will need to use the driver in their counties to complete the 6 hours of driving instruction which might include an additional fee.

    ***Note #2: Attention to students attending a school which is out-of-state, or an online school which is based out-of-state. Mountain Professionals, who handles the driving portion of driver education, only receives funding from NC for students enrolled in NC schools for the driving portion of driver education. Thus, any student who attends a school out of state, or attends an online school which is based in a state other than NC, will have an additional fee of $250 for the driving portion of driver education. Once the student has completed the $65 online course, and the Restricted instruction permit (covered in course orientation) is received, the student/parent will receive an email with payment options for the Driving Portion. Students/parents may also choose to complete the 6 hours of Driving Instruction through a commercial driving school. The following is a list of some of the commercial driving schools in NC.

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REGISTRATION SECTION 

Click Here to Register onto the Online Driver Ed Waiting List

 

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Frequently Asked Questions

Are students in all school systems and counties eligible to take the online class?

WRESA online driver ed courses are only open to students who live in the WRESA service area, which includes the following counties/school systems: Asheville City, Buncombe, Cherokee Central, Cherokee County, Clay, Graham, Haywood, Henderson, Jackson, Macon, Madison, McDowell, Mitchell, Polk, Rutherford, Swain, Transylvania, and Yancey.

***Note #1: Jackson and Haywood students must use a NC commercial driving school for the 6 hours of driving instruction and will include an additional fee.  Also, students in Cherokee Central, Cherokee County, Clay, Graham, Macon, and Swain counties will need to use the driver in their counties to complete the 6 hours of driving instruction which might include an additional fee.

***Note #2: Attention to students attending a school which is out-of-state, or an online school which is based out-of-state:

Mountain Professionals, who handles the driving portion of driver education, only receives funding from NC for students enrolled in NC schools for the driving portion of driver education. Thus, any student who attends a school out of state, or attends an online school which is based in a state other than NC, will have an additional fee of $250 for the driving portion of driver education. Once the student has completed the $65 online course, and the Restricted instruction permit (covered in course orientation) is received, the student/parent will receive an email with payment options for the Driving Portion. Students/parents may also choose to complete the 6 hours of Driving Instruction through a commercial driving school. The following is a list of some of the commercial driving schools in NC.

How much does the online class cost?

The cost for the online driver’s education class is $65 payable by credit card.  The registration fee is non-refundable and non-transferable; please be sure you can complete the requirements during the times specified for the course prior to registering.

How long does the online class take to complete?

The Driver Ed courses offered on the WRESA website are completely ONLINE using pre-recorded videos and take 5 weeks to complete. There are a certain number of units due at the end of each week, and the students can work around their schedules to complete the work for that week. A student needs a computer/laptop/tablet with internet access to be able to complete the work assignments for the course. Phones do not work well with the course platform. An instructor will run the course and  help the students navigate through the course.  The instructor will also send out weekly student progress reports to the students and parents.

How do I know what to do for the course once I complete the class registration?

  • Upon successful online registration, registrants will receive a confirmation email. Also, on the Friday in which the course begins, registrants will receive an email from the instructor of the course with directions for enrolling in the course and completing the Orientation, which should take about 30 minutes to an hour to complete. The Orientation must be completed by midnight that Sunday.
  • All sections and quizzes must be completed for Units by the end of the week that they are assigned.
  • Road Signs Test and Final Exam must be completed on one of the designated dates during the designated time.
  • Students must earn an overall grade of “60” to receive credit for this course.

​**Please note:  Students must complete assignments during the time frame outlined in the schedule.  The student has the flexibility to work on the specific week’s units anytime during that week that works best for the student’s schedule.  The units for that week, however, must be completed by the end of that week. You will NOT be allowed to makeup any assignments.**

Is there an outline of course requirements?

Orientation – –     3 Days to complete

First Week – –      Units 1 – 3    (Due by the end of the week)

Second Week – – Units 4 – 6    (Due by the end of the week)

Third Week – –     Units 7 – 9    (Due by the end of the week)

Fourth Week – –   Units 10 – 13  (Due by the end of the week)

Final Exam – –      Choose one of the 2-hour window options over 2 days

What do I need to do once I complete the course? (How do I obtain and complete a Restricted Instruction Permit (RIP) form?) 

Following completion of the online course (or, the student can actually complete and submit while taking the course), each student must fill out and mail the Restricted Instruction Permit (RIP) form to Mountain Professionals.  Here are the steps to complete the RIP:

1)  If you need to print a copy of the RIP form, you can download it here: Restricted Instruction Permit.

2)  Student needs to fill out the student information section at the top of the form, which also requires both student and parent signatures. Complete the RIP form in BLUE or BLACK ink. Have a parent/guardian sign in BLUE or BLACK ink.

3)  As part of completing the RIP form, students are required to get an eye exam. Note that the DMV will NO longer accept eye exams from a doctor.  Students must be at least 14 1/2 years old and less than 18 years old to get the eye exam at the DMV. To find out more information about getting the eye exam, click on  Mountain Professional RIP.

4)  Mail the RIP form to the following address:

Mountain Professionals, Inc.

PO Box 212

Bakersville, NC  28705

5)  When received, Mountain Professionals, Inc (MPI) will verify the RIP form and the student’s grades for the course.  If all looks good, Mountain Professionals will send the RIP form to the driving instructor in the student’s district. Mountain Professionals will also email the student and the parent to inform them that the RIP was received and has been sent to the driving instructor.  Once the driving instructor receives the RIP form, the student will be scheduled to drive in birth order, with the oldest driving first.  Typically, a student will receive a call from the driving instructor within 30 to 90 days after receipt of the RIP, depending on the student’s age and the number of students in that district.

*** Students will not be able to drive until the RIP form is turned in to Mountain Professionals and the RIP form has been verified.

***For questions about the Driving Portion and RIP form, contact Mountain Professionals, Inc. at 828-483-4708 or you can email driversed@wresa.org