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When Malvern takes the wheel

Insight about driving programs at Malvern and tips to those getting on the road for the first time.

Driving is a very serious and responsible action that most new 16-year-olds will undertake. It truly is one of the biggest responsibilities a person has in their life. Malvern offers a Driver’s Ed program to help new drivers’ skills when they get behind the wheel. You can join the Driver’s Ed program when you turn 15 and learn tips to get ahead of the game when you get your permit after your 16th birthday.

Head of Upper School Mr. Ron Algeo explains that the Drivers Ed program at Malvern is not actually run by the school, but by an external program.

“The company that does [the Drivers Ed program] isn’t necessarily sponsored by Malvern, they just use our facilities.” Algeo said.

According to Algeo, there was a teacher some time ago who sponsored a Drivers Ed program that occurred at night for Malvern students. “We had a program sponsored by a teacher years ago, but when he left he took the program with him.” Algeo said.

Algeo has also said that Malvern hasn’t really felt the need to implement new Drivers Ed programs besides the one that we already use.

“As a school, we always try to be open to student input on current needs,” Algeo said. “If there was a ground swell from students and families, then I know that the school would look into it. As of now, we haven’t been asked.”

“There are a lot of companies that let you do a two-hour driving lesson with an experienced instructor,” junior JR Byrne ’18. “These were very helpful in giving me confidence to pass the driver’s test, especially with a complete stranger in the car telling me what to do.”

“There are a lot of companies that let you do a two-hour driving lesson with an experienced instructor,” junior JR Byrne ’18. “These were very helpful in giving me confidence to pass the driver’s test, especially with a complete stranger in the car telling me what to do.”  

Malvern upperclassmen have words of advice for underclassmen to pass their tests. The first tip of advice comes before you even go to take the test. “Try not to tell that many people that you are taking the test. The only thing worse than failing the test is if everyone else knows that you failed the test too,” junior David Wiener said.

“Just relax; don’t think that you have anything to prove. It’s just another simple drive. Also, while preparing, prepare for everything,” senior Jimmy Dugan said. “My test was during a storm.”

“Practice parallel parking as much as possible,” senior Dan Ford said.

“Take everything slow and safe,” junior Shawn Oates said. “Also, be nice to the person who’s giving you your test, because you definitely don’t want to get them mad.”

Many students gave credit to StreetSafe and other driving instructor companies for passing the test. “My last instruction was the day before I took my test and I wasn’t feeling very confident about my parallel parking abilities,” Wiener said. “After that lesson I was only needing two turns to successfully park the car.”

Junior Alex MacLachlan recently passed his driver’s test. “Make sure that the instructor’s seat-belt is buckled before you start moving. I almost forgot that when I took the test,” he said.

For underclassmen who will be behind the wheel in the future, Algeo addressed a major issue in today’s world: distracted driving.

“Eliminate as many distractions as possible. This generation had a major disservice done to them; I don’t think it’s really all your fault, because you’ve all been raised with an electronic device in hand at a very early age,” Algeo said.

“When I’m driving, I see people with things in their hands all the time. Anything can happen when you’re distracted.”

About Kyle Leonard

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Kyle is a sophomore at Malvern, and has been involved with the Blackfriar Chronicle for two years. A resident of Malvern, PA, he is the Co-Friar Life Editor along with Mike Harrington. Outside of the paper, Kyle is a part of the winter track and baseball teams, MTS, and the Diversity Awareness Club. Kyle also plays piano, trumpet, and some guitar.

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