Poor quality tutors will be forced to improve or face publication of performance ratings in a bid to up the driving test pass rate
UNDER-PERFORMING driving instructors will be exposed by an Ofsted-style rating system in an attempt to improve pass rates.
The rankings system could be made public if tutors don’t up their game as it was revealed less than half of driving tests are passed, with one learner having to sit 39 exams before being handed a licence.
Bad driving instructors will be exposed by league tables to drive up pass rate
The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) is threatening to release the 40,000-strong league table, similar to university or school ratings, to steer novices away from bad teachers.
Instructors are subjected to regular checks by the DVSA but only 30 per cent achieve the highest Grade A ranking. Almost 69 per cent are rated as just satisfactory.
Last year 682 instructors were even struck off after failing to reach the minimum standards.
But there’s currently no requirement for instructors to make their rating public, and only three per cent do so voluntarily – but that’s set to change.
Gareth Llewellyn, DVSA chief executive, told The Times that ratings would be published in the next few years if instructors failed to volunteer the information.
He added: “We are encouraging driving instructors to publish their rating. If they don’t do that, then at some point we will compel them to do that. We will put out information into the public domain so that parents can choose a good driving instructor.”
Figures from last year showed a 38-year-old man from Liverpool passed his driving test on the 39th attempt. At least two others from Sutton Coldfield and Weston-super-Mare passed on their 36th attempts.
Pass rate is less than half with some having to take 30 tests before getting a licence
Overall, 48.6 per cent of practical tests were passed in the last three months of 2016, down by 0.4 per cent on the previous year.
And while the DVSA is keen to drive this up, Llewellyn also revealed previous proposals to add a deposit on top of the £62 test fee with only successful candidates getting money back have been scrapped.
He said it would hit the poorest people hardest and it could lead to a rise in the number of violent attacks on examiners from frustrated motorists who have lost their deposits, with 236 verbal and 13 physical attacks already being logged in 2016.