Thursday, 8 May 2008
Department of Transport
Question 67: To ask the Minister for Transport his views on whether adequate exemptions are being granted to driving instructors who were on the driving instructors register who wish to register as an approved driving instructor; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [15237/08]
Question 69: To ask the Minister for Transport his views on whether the time-frame for full implementation of the approved driving instructor will be adequate to allow for the testing and re-testing of driving instructors; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [15238/08]
I propose to take Questions Nos. 67 and 69 together.
The Road Safety Authority (RSA) has given me comprehensive proposals for the registration and regulation of driving instructors, with a target operational date of 1 January 2009. The RSA's proposals followed on from extensive consultations it has engaged in with the driving instructor sector since 2006.
The proposals provide, inter alia, that the RSA may exempt a person from having to undertake one or more of the three required qualification tests for accreditation as an approved driving instructor, where it can be demonstrated that he or she meets the standard for the particular qualification test.
The RSA has administrative and testing arrangements in place to enable it to process applications from persons seeking accreditation as approved driving instructors.
Standards in driving instruction are an important element in the overall road safety agenda, particularly in relation to providing quality instruction for learner drivers, and this is recognised in the Road Safety Strategy 2006-2012.