Drivers Education Overview


    The state of North Carolina requires anyone under the age of 18 to complete a driver's education course consisting of at least 30 hours of classroom work and a minimum of 6 hours of behind-the-wheel instruction. To be eligible to register for a class session, you must be 14 1/2 years old by the first day of class. Once a student is age eligible, the first step is to review the upcoming class sessions that are offered at your high school.  During the school year, students must register for class at the school that they attend. 

    Students may register for a different school during the summer sessions within the Onslow County school system that they are enrolled in. Students may not cross into other counties or Camp Lejeune to attend the driver's education class. You can see the class schedule listings for each high school to include Camp Lejeune by going to

    At this time, the fee for Driver's Education will be waived until further notice. There will be a $XX.xx non-refundable student fee that must be paid during the first week of class. Payment will need to be in the form of CASH, CERTIFIED CHECK, or MONEY ORDER made payable to NCDS.  

    Though class sessions vary from school to school, most class sessions are eleven school-days long with each session lasting three hours and typically there are no class sessions on Fridays. Students are only allowed 1 absence. During the summer classes there are no excused absences. Students must attend all sessions to get credit for the class. Please do not register for a class if you know you will have to miss more than one day.


    Home/Private school students are eligible to take the class at the high school which they are districted for. Since NC law requires 30 hours of class, students must be able to get to the class on time. Please do not register for a class if you cannot attend every day and arrive on time.

    Once the student has completed the classroom phase of driver's education, the students from each class are placed in order by date of birth from the oldest to the youngest and will be driven in that order. You should receive a call within 30 to 90 days of classroom completion from your instructor to set up your behind-the-wheel schedule. Our instructors will do their best to work with your schedule. Most instructors drive afternoons, evenings, and on Saturday. Some instructors drive mornings before school. There is no one-on-one instruction, and there will be a total of two or three students in the vehicle. Students will be picked up and dismissed from the school campus. It is the parents’ responsibility to provide transportation to and from the driver's course. It typically takes three to four days to complete the behind-the-wheel phase. On the last day of driving, the instructor will issue a completion certificate; this certificate does not expire. You will then need to obtain a driver eligibility certificate (DEC); this certificate is provided by the high school and verifies that the student meets the requirements of the adequate progress law. The driver eligibility certificate expires 30 days from the issue date.



    You will need to provide our office, North Carolina Driving School, 800 375-6550, either an official letter on the company's letter head or a certificate from the school or company where you took the driver's education program. The form must show how many hours of instruction, for classroom and behind the wheel, the student has completed. Our office will submit the information to a DMV specialist and, if approved, we will provide the student with a NC completion certificate. If the requirements for NC have not been met, our office staff will contact you to determine the next steps.