Majority oppose restoring state funding for drivers' education programs - 350 participants

Sep 03, 2016

Currently in New Hampshire, drivers between the ages of 15 and a half and 18 who wish to apply for a license must complete a drivers education course. In 2012, New Hampshire lawmakers eliminated a subsidy that subsidized drivers education classes for roughly $150 per student. Read more about this issue. On September 3, Citizens Count, NH’s Live Free or Die Alliance decided to put the issue to its Facebook members, posting the question, “Should NH restore state funding for drivers education programs?”

“Should NH restore state funding for drivers education programs?”

Results: Yes or No Respondents

Drivers Education Funding NH Citizen Voices Chart

Participation: 350 participants gave 735 responses

A total of 88% of those participating gave a 'yes or no' response to the question. The remaining 12% of participants engaged in the discussion but did not give a yes or no response. In total, the LFDA received 735 responses from 350 individuals. (Click here for details on our methodology.)

What Participants Said:

No: A majority, at 65% of ‘yes or no’ respondents, were opposed to restoring state funding for drivers education programs.

  • “The state should not pay for anyone to learn how to drive.”
  • “If you want a license, figure out a way to pay for it. It's a valuable lesson in having to work for what you want.”
  • “If you don’t have the money or don’t want to pay, wait until you are 18.”

Yes:  The minority of ‘yes or no’ respondents, at 35%, supported restoring state funding for drivers education programs.

  • “If the goal of public high school education is to produce well rounded individuals who are ready to be productive adults, then driving should be part of the curriculum.”
  • “Yes. Better drivers make safer roads.”
  • “These programs are so expensive that getting a license is entirely out of reach for many kids, which prevents them from working, taking evening classes – tons of things.”

Other: As noted above, 12% of those participating did not give a yes or no response, instead addressing their comments to related questions and issues. These included:

  • Sharing past experiences: “I'm not sure how it got paid for, but as a teenager in NJ in the 60's, we had driver's ed in school. It worked out really well.”
  • Alternatives to reinstating funding: “What NH should have done was pass the online drivers ed program like many states have… The cost for online is 1/3 of what is offered at school.”
  • Whether citizens have ‘a right to drive’: “It is not a privilege… who are they to say I don’t have a right to operate a piece of machinery I purchased in order to make a living?”

*Editor selection of actual participant quotes. 

Click here to read the full Facebook discussion of this question. 

Know someone who would be interested in these results? Forward them the summary version of this report. 

Do you think NH should restore funding for drivers education programs? Leave a comment and have your say! 

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