Driver's education

 

 

 

Commercial Learner's Permit (CLP)

You will need a Commercial Learner’s Permit (CLP) if you are:
  • Applying for a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) for the first time.
  • Upgrading your existing CDL and the upgrade requires a skills (driving) test.
You must hold a CLP for at least 14 days before you can complete the required skills (driving) test.

You are required to provide the following documents to obtain your CLP unless you already have a license marked as REAL-ID compliant (which means we already have this information verified). A REAL-ID has a gold star in the top right corner of your license. CLP Process
 

 

Live Tabs

 

 

2016 Iowa Department of Transportation’s Driver Education Conference


Join us April 23, 2016, for an excellent opportunity to network with both classroom and behind-the-wheel instructors from across the state.

Register for 2016 Driver Education Conference

April 23, 2016

Scheman Building at
Iowa State Center, Ames


Map and driving directions
(Note: Scheman Building is labeled as The Farm House Museum on the map)

 

Commercial Learner's Permit (CLP)

You will need a Commercial Learner’s Permit (CLP) if you are:
  • Applying for a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) for the first time.
  • Upgrading your existing CDL and the upgrade requires a skills (driving) test.
You must hold a CLP for at least 14 days before you can complete the required skills (driving) test.

You are required to provide the following documents to obtain your CLP unless you already have a license marked as REAL-ID compliant (which means we already have this information verified). A REAL-ID has a gold star in the top right corner of your license. CLP Process
 

 

Live Tabs

 

 

Iowa driver education certification courses

University of Northern Iowa
UNI offers the full endorsement.
Contact: Kent Johnson at the Continuing Education Credit Programs
Telephone: 800-648-3864 or 319-273-7740
Email:  continuinged@uni.edu
Website

Grand View University, Des Moines
Grand View offers the full endorsement as well as behind-the-wheel certification.
Contact: Shannon Tuhn
Telephone: 515-263-6183
Email:  stuhn@grandview.edu
Website

Western Iowa Tech, Sioux City
WIT offers behind the wheel classes as well as refresher courses online.
Contact: Dar Raye Hunwardsen
Instructor:  John Torno
Telephone: 800-352-4649 or 712-274-6400, ext. 1475


Course work must be coordinated with the Iowa Department of Education, Board of Educational Examiners

You cannot teach driver education in the classroom without first obtaining a full endorsement.

You cannot teach the behind-the-wheel portion of driver education without first obtaining a BTW certification from the Iowa Department of Transportation and the authorization from the Iowa DED, Board of Educational Examiners

 

Commercial Learner's Permit (CLP)

You will need a Commercial Learner’s Permit (CLP) if you are:
  • Applying for a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) for the first time.
  • Upgrading your existing CDL and the upgrade requires a skills (driving) test.
You must hold a CLP for at least 14 days before you can complete the required skills (driving) test.

You are required to provide the following documents to obtain your CLP unless you already have a license marked as REAL-ID compliant (which means we already have this information verified). A REAL-ID has a gold star in the top right corner of your license. CLP Process
 

 

Live Tabs

 

 

Iowa Driver Education Course Requirements

Iowa Code section 321.178 mandates thirty clock hours of classroom instruction and six or more clock hours of laboratory instruction. This Code section also mandates that the classroom instruction include all of the following:
  • A minimum of four hours of instruction concerning substance abuse
  • A minimum of twenty minutes of instruction concerning railroad crossing safety
  • Instruction relating to becoming an organ donor under the revised uniform anatomical gift Act as provided in chapter 142C
  • Instruction providing awareness about sharing the road with bicycles and motorcycles. The instruction course shall be first approved by the state department of transportation. Instructional materials creating awareness about sharing the road with bicycles and motorcycles shall also be distributed during the course of instruction.

Instructional materials for sharing the road with bicycles and motorcycles may be obtained by contacting jim.nervig@dot.iowa.gov

Most Iowa Driver Education providers use their textbook and related tests and materials to establish their curriculum.  There are many professional curriculums, such as the American Driver & Traffic Safety Education Association (ADTSEA), available to assist providers in the development of their curriculum.        

Each Iowa driver education provider is encouraged to contact the Office of Driver Services to schedule a DOT sponsored presentation designed specifically for young drivers.  This presentation provides valuable information concerning highway safety and Iowa’s Graduated Drivers License (GDL) program.

Chapters and sections of particular interest to Driver Education teachers and classes may be:

  • 321.174 Operators licensed
  • 321.178 Driver education – Iowa Code
  • 761-634 Driver Education – Iowa Administrative Code
  • 321.180B Graduated driver's licenses
  • 321.194 Special minor's licenses
  • 321.276 Use of electronic communication device while driving  - text messaging
    • States in part….A person shall not use a hand-held electronic communication device to write, send, or read a text message while driving a motor vehicle unless the motor vehicle is at a complete stop off the traveled portion of the roadway. Refer to the Code section for the complete version of this law.
  • 321.446 – Child restraint devices. 
    • States in part….A child at least six years of age but under eighteen years of age who is being transported in a motor vehicle subject to registration, except a school bus or motorcycle, shall be secured during transit by a child restraint system that is used in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions or by a safety belt or safety harness of a type approved under section 321.445.   Refer to the Code section for the complete version of this law.
  • 321A Financial Responsibility
  • 321J Operating While Intoxicated

Use of electronic devices or equipment

A person issued an instruction permit, intermediate driver’s license, minor school license or special restricted license shall not use an electronic communication device or an electronic entertainment device while driving a motor vehicle unless the motor vehicle is at a complete stop off the traveled portion of the roadway.

 

Commercial Learner's Permit (CLP)

You will need a Commercial Learner’s Permit (CLP) if you are:
  • Applying for a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) for the first time.
  • Upgrading your existing CDL and the upgrade requires a skills (driving) test.
You must hold a CLP for at least 14 days before you can complete the required skills (driving) test.

You are required to provide the following documents to obtain your CLP unless you already have a license marked as REAL-ID compliant (which means we already have this information verified). A REAL-ID has a gold star in the top right corner of your license. CLP Process
 

 

Live Tabs

 

 

Lane changes: Head check versus mirror settings

At the Iowa Conference of Traffic Safety, jointly sponsored by the Iowa Traffic Control and Safety Association and the Iowa Association of Safety Education, held in Des Moines on Oct. 31 and Nov. 1, 2002, Dr. Terry Kline of the Traffic Safety Institute at Eastern Kentucky University presented a number of interesting topics of which one related to the setting of rear view mirrors. His studies show that on recently produced cars, all three mirrors (left outside, inside and right outside) may be set in such a way that the blind spot is eliminated. Eliminating the blind spot with mirrors would negate the need to do head checks prior to changing lanes. This office has since learned that some drivers education teachers are teaching their students about this "mirrors only" method of checking blind spots.

When students use only mirror adjustment to check for blind spots during their driving tests at the Iowa DOT driver's license stations or county treasurer's offices points have been deducted because the students did not do the head check prior to changing lanes. This has apparently caused some confusion. After consideration, the Iowa DOT has determined it will continue to require head checks prior to lane changes and deduct points if the head check is not used.

Mirror adjustment only to cover a blind spot is a good practice and teachers should continue to introduce it and head checks to their students. However, it is not universally understood by all applicants for licenses, it may not work in the variety of vehicles seen at licensing stations and treasurer's offices, and it is hard for the examiner to determine if the applicant is using the mirrors only method or the driver just forgot to do a very important step in the action of changing lanes.

 

Commercial Learner's Permit (CLP)

You will need a Commercial Learner’s Permit (CLP) if you are:
  • Applying for a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) for the first time.
  • Upgrading your existing CDL and the upgrade requires a skills (driving) test.
You must hold a CLP for at least 14 days before you can complete the required skills (driving) test.

You are required to provide the following documents to obtain your CLP unless you already have a license marked as REAL-ID compliant (which means we already have this information verified). A REAL-ID has a gold star in the top right corner of your license. CLP Process
 

 

Live Tabs

 

 

Proprietary driver education schools application instructions

There are specific, legal steps that must be taken by individuals seeking approval to conduct proprietary schools of instruction, including driver’s education courses in Iowa. The process involves four separate state agencies (1) the Iowa Secretary of State's Office, (2) the Iowa Department of Transportation, (3) the Iowa Department of Education, and (4) the Iowa College Student Aid Commission. It is the responsibility of the private driving school applicant to contact each of these agencies to obtain the necessary documents and approvals before any instruction may begin.

You must first contact the Iowa Secretary of State’s Office to obtain a certificate of organization to do business in Iowa. This is the certificate that all businesses need to operate in the state. This must be completed before going farther with this process. You can obtain information on the Iowa Secretary of State’s Office website or by calling its customer service section at 515-242-6303. 

After obtaining the necessary documents from the Iowa Secretary of State’s Office, you will need to complete the “Proprietary Driver Education Program Approval” and “Proprietary Driver Education Teacher Approval” forms and return them to the Iowa Department of Transportation for review with a copy of the Certificate of Organization. At the same time, you must register with the Iowa Colleges Student Aid Commission. This registration requires you to show evidence of financial responsibility, including either a letter of credit or a bond. The Iowa College Student Aid Commission forms are available by calling 877-272-4456. When all steps are completed, the Commission will issue a letter of registration to you.

You must obtain the appropriate Iowa teaching credentials to conduct classroom or behind-the-wheel driver’s education instruction. If you need assistance in obtaining the required driver’s education teaching credentials for Iowa, call 515-281-3605 at the Practitioner Preparation and Licensure Bureau of the Iowa Department of Education.

Upon approval of your program, as per Iowa Code and Iowa Administrative Rules, and verification that each instructor listed has obtained the required teacher certification and endorsement, the forms will be signed and returned with a letter that serves as your license to offer driver education courses and will include a course identification number. A copy will be sent to the Iowa College Student Aid Commission.  These forms are available for printing from this website.

alertThis entire process must be completed before conducting driver education courses in Iowa.

For new proprietary driver education schools

For renewal proprietary driver education schools


If you are unable to get these forms from this website or for more information regarding proprietary driver education schools, contact:

Iowa DOT
Jim Nervig
Office of Driver Services
P.O. Box 9204
Des Moines, IA 50306
Telephone: 515-237-3220
Email: jim.nervig@dot.iowa.gov


Related websites:

Minor restricted license (MSL) questions and answers

Public school district driver education program application instructions

 

Commercial Learner's Permit (CLP)

You will need a Commercial Learner’s Permit (CLP) if you are:
  • Applying for a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) for the first time.
  • Upgrading your existing CDL and the upgrade requires a skills (driving) test.
You must hold a CLP for at least 14 days before you can complete the required skills (driving) test.

You are required to provide the following documents to obtain your CLP unless you already have a license marked as REAL-ID compliant (which means we already have this information verified). A REAL-ID has a gold star in the top right corner of your license. CLP Process
 

 

Live Tabs

 

 

Public school district driver education annual report

  • Print and complete the following form in its entirety (Due Dec. 24 annually):
    Driver Education Annual Report
  • Sign (by school superintendent or principal) and date forms.

  • Mail forms to:

    Jim Nervig, Driver Education
    Iowa DOT
    P.O. Box 9204
    Des Moines, IA 50306
If you are unable to get this form from this website or for more information regarding public school driver education programs, contact:

Iowa DOT
Jim Nervig
Office of Driver Services
P.O. Box 9204
Des Moines, IA 50306
Telephone: 515-237-3220
Email: jim.nervig@dot.iowa.gov


Related websites

Minor Restricted License (MSL) Questions & Answers

 

Commercial Learner's Permit (CLP)

You will need a Commercial Learner’s Permit (CLP) if you are:
  • Applying for a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) for the first time.
  • Upgrading your existing CDL and the upgrade requires a skills (driving) test.
You must hold a CLP for at least 14 days before you can complete the required skills (driving) test.

You are required to provide the following documents to obtain your CLP unless you already have a license marked as REAL-ID compliant (which means we already have this information verified). A REAL-ID has a gold star in the top right corner of your license. CLP Process
 

 

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Parent-taught (home-school) driver education

Parent-taught (home-school) driver education was created and authorized by the Iowa legislature for parents that home-school their children. The information below contains the requirements, process, and Iowa DOT approved courses.

 


 

 

 

 

Parent-taught (home-school) driver education

Parent-taught (home-school) driver education was created and authorized by the Iowa legislature for parents that home-school their children. The information below contains the requirements, process, and Iowa DOT approved courses.

 


 

 

About the Motor Vehicle Division

Office of Driver Services

The Office of Driver Services is comprised of several groups that handle driver’s licensing, records, and identification credentials for Iowans as well as driver safety education. In addition to the 19 Iowa DOT driver's license issuance sites managed by the office, it supports 81 county treasurer’s office locations that also issue driver’s licenses and identification cards.

The nature of driver’s licensing and identification authentication is becoming more complex. To meet the challenge, this office has focused on taking an innovative approach. For instance, many services are now available online, including license or ID renewal, mailing address changes, driving record access.

Office of Vehicle & Motor Carrier Services

The Office of Vehicle & Motor Carrier Services oversees a wide range of regulations related to vehicle titling and registration, dealer licensing, salvage theft, personalized and specialty license plates, oversize/overweight permitting, transit fuel, intrastate travel authority, commercial vehicle registration, and the commercial fuel tax. The office also manages international agreements that allow carriers to operate in other member jurisdictions without contacting each jurisdiction individually.

Many other government agencies, as well as private companies, work closely with this office. For instance, the vehicle registration and titling system for the entire state network of counties and dealers is managed by this office.

Investigative Bureau

 

Office of Motor Vehicle Enforcement

Iowa motor vehicle enforcement officer duties

OMVE badge
A motor vehicle enforcement officer is a peace officer whose primary duty is to enforce all state and federal regulations that apply to commercial vehicles travelling Iowa's roadways. Some of the laws enforced relate to the following.
  • State and federal motor carrier safety regulations
  • State and federal hazardous materials regulations
  • Driver qualifications/driver licensing
  • Vehicle registration
  • Overweight and over-dimensional vehicles
  • Fuel tax compliance
  • Shipping papers
  • Travel authority
  • Liability insurance

Job duties include, but are not limited to:
  • Inspecting commercial vehicles and drivers to determine compliance with state and federal laws relating to driver qualification, hours of service, driver licensing, vehicle size, weight and vehicle safety compliance.
  • Enforcing traffic laws to promote safety, reduce crashes and expedite traffic flow.
  • Assisting other law enforcement officers when requested or when situation dictates.
  • Preparing and testifying in court to present the facts surrounding any civil, criminal or departmental action.

History of Iowa motor vehicle enforcement

OMVE badge
In 1941, engineers of the Iowa State Highway Commission became concerned with the increasing number of overweight trucks that would, over time, contribute greatly to a gradual destruction of Iowa highways. A decision was made to pursue legislation for the highway commission to designate certain employees as peace officers to enforce violations regarding weight and size. On April 16, 1941, such a proposal was signed into law by Governor Wilson, and on July 1 of that same year the traffic weight officer of the highway commission became reality.

The Iowa Department of Transportation was formed by an act of the Iowa Legislature effective July 1, 1975. Officers of the Iowa Commerce Commission, traffic weight officers of the highway commission, and the motor vehicle investigators from the Iowa Department of Public Safety were combined as the Office of Motor Vehicle Enforcement.

Responsibilities of the uniformed officer continued to include enforcement of the laws relating to size, weight, registration and authority. Responsibilities of the investigators included enforcement of the laws relating to vehicle registration, dealer licensing and motor vehicle inspection. All officers and investigators are required to successfully complete the Iowa Law Enforcement Academy's basic training requirements.

From the early 1980s to the present additional duties have been added to the uniformed officer's existing responsibilities, including Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations, hazardous materials regulations, and the use of untaxed fuel. Investigators have taken on odometer tampering, driver license fraud, use tax investigations and salvage theft examinations.

Modern technology, including weigh-in-motion, portable scales, weapons, preliminary breath testers, pen-based computers and mobile data transmission capabilities in the patrol cars have been added to enhance the motor vehicle officer position.

Training, including the North American Standard Inspection class, hazardous materials and cargo tank courses, firearms training, self-defense classes, and a 14-week field training officer program for new officers, has added to the professionalism of the office.

In 1993, two new weigh stations were opened in Dallas and Jasper counties. These facilities include the latest in technology with computerized work stations, in-line ramp weigh-in-motion technology, and license plate readers. In 2000, a new state-of-the-art mainline weigh-in-motion scale was opened in Fremont County.

The Office of Motor Vehicle Enforcement includes 130 officers and investigators dedicated to highway safety.

Career opportunities for a motor vehicle enforcement officer

In order to become an Iowa motor vehicle enforcement officer, persons must successfully complete the following four required tests.
  1. Fitness (Cooper Standards)
  2. P.O.S.T (Peace Officer Selection Test)
  3. M.M.P.I (Minnesota Multiphasic Psychological Evaluation)
  4. Oral Board
  5. Polygraph

Certified Iowa peace officers are not required to a fitness test, as per Iowa Admin. Code r. 501-2.3(80B).  All applicants must successfully complete motor vehicle enforcement fitness requirements.

Applicants are responsible for all personal costs (e.g., transportation, lodging, meals) incurred during the testing process.

As peace officers with statewide jurisdiction, the primary job responsibility of a motor vehicle enforcement officer is enforcement of commercial motor vehicle laws, rules and regulations.

Law Enforcement Careers with Motor Vehicle Enforcement brochure


Minimum qualifications

Applicant must:
  • Be a United States citizen and become an Iowa resident.
  • Be at least 18 years of age.
  • Possess a valid Iowa driver's license.
  • Possess a high school diploma or general education development (GED) diploma.
  • Be in acceptable physical and mental condition to perform his/her duties under physically demanding conditions.
  • Have uncorrected vision no worse than 20/100 in each eye, corrected to 20/20 in each eye.
  • Have normal color vision as prescribed by Iowa Law Enforcement Academy rules: Color vision is determined by the pseudoischromatic plates tests such as, but not limited to, the American Optical Co. (Required identification of 14 out of 18 plates.)
  • Have normal hearing in each ear. (Hearing is considered normal when tested by an audiometer and hearing sensitivity thresholds are within 25 db measured at 1000 hz, 2000 hz and 3000 hz averaged together.)
  • Have no history of epilepsy.
  • Have refrained from unlawful use or experimentation of any drug. Unlawful use or experimentation of marijuana or steroids may disqualify an applicant.
  • Not have a conviction of domestic assault.
  • Be willing to relocate.
  • Pass a background examination, including fingerprint search through state and national files.



Essential functions

If hired as a motor vehicle enforcement officer and with proper training, applicants shall be required to demonstrate the ability to perform the following essential functions.
  • Travel and stay out overnight approximately three to five times per month.
  • Meet or exceed minimum Iowa Law Enforcement standards with an issued firearm.
  • Successfully operate Windows-based computer programs.
  • Load, unload, carry and use 45-pound portable scales, which includes stooping, bending and twisting of the body on a frequent basis.
  • Effectively communicate with a diverse population in varying situations.
  • When warranted, use force, up to and including deadly force.
  • Perform multiple functions while attending to detail.
  • Work a rotating schedule, which includes days, nights and weekends.
  • Respond to short-notice schedule changes.
  • Climb in, on, under and around commercial vehicles.
  • Perform emergency functions (including, but not limited to, traffic control at floods, tornadoes, hazardous material incidents, traffic accidents, etc.) for extended periods of time in less than ideal conditions.



Salary

Pay scale under current contract (July 2010):
  • $1,479.20 to $2,212.80 (biweekly)
  • $38,459.20 to $57,332.80 (annual)



Benefits

  • Paid vacation
  • Paid sick leave
  • $20,000 paid life insurance
  • Medical and dental insurance
  • Pretax conversion program
  • Iowa Public Employees Retirement System (IPERS) with retirement available at 55 after 22 years of service.
  • Deferred compensation



Applications

If you believe you meet the minimum qualifications and with proper training can perform the essential functions of a motor vehicle enforcement officer with the Iowa DOT, you are encouraged to request an employment application packet during open application periods.