Standards Checks, New Ideas – you name it…

Jun 26, 2013

Following a meeting in Altrincham on the 25th June, I thought  the content might be of interest to other driving instructors reading this blog. I would like to point out that it was a particularly useful meeting and hosted by the DIA – the best bit was that the two course leaders stood up in turn at the front and educated us on numerous subjects including the dreaded Standards Check ( ex Check Test ).


Quite honestly, I get a bit sick of some of the group workshops events that we pay for only to find that most of the information is actually imparted from other ADI’s via a brainstorming session set round various tables. As Bill Gates once said, these events are the blind leading the blind. I have always thought that  the chalk and talk method was under rated so, it has to be said that, I loved this meeting and the coffee and biscuits were jolly good, too.


This I definitely of interest ( or should be ) to the driving instructors ) as opposed to the learners but I am going to be very dull and merely write my comments in report form as the subjects came up at the meeting. I know you won’t mind because instructors are always having to read this sort of stuff anyway.


So, here we go…

1.We were advised to download and read the National Standards links for trainers and drivers respectively  ( and riders where applicable ).

I am enclosing a link here to the page on my site where you can see these – the reason for not providing a direct link here is to do with search engines – a link within my own site should help balance out the links away from the site – don’t worry about  it if you’re not a techy…;-)

Link to the useful links page on this site – some more than others, perhaps…;-)



2. Learning to drive is likely to evolve towards a graduated learning form as opposed to at graduated licensing one.


3.Even thought CPD is not, in itself, mandatory, if you were to receive a poor mark on a Standards Check, it could be held against you if  you hadn’t been attempting to keep up to date, as is your responsibility. I suppose you could say it’s rather like the Highway Code in that respect, in that if you don’t obey it and something goes wrong, it can be held against you.  Needless to say, then, it is in your interests to keep copies of any CPD in evidence – including Reflective Learning ( which could be the noting down of an experience whilst teaching that enables you to learns something new ). Reflective Learning does tend to follow practical experience.


4.The new Standards Check will replace the Check Test in April 2014 – April the 1st…? 😉


5.Just to recap the new system –

There are 3 boxes into which the new marking sheet may be broken down – the categories include
a.Lesson Planning ( 4 sub levels )
b.Risk Management (5 sub levels )
c.Teaching & Learning Strategies ( 7 sublevels )

You may score between 0 and 3 in each sub level bringing a possible total to 48. Not sure yet what the gradings  will be. You must score at least 8 in the Risk Management box to pass.
There were a couple of things that were not quite clear to me which I queried…

In “Teaching & Learning Strategies”, the second sub level is …
“Was the student encouraged to analyse problems and take responsibility for their learning?”
Because the analysis is a core skill ( which I understand are still mandatory,  albeit written up in a different way ), I thought that this point, alone, should have been put into some kind of mandatory box with a  minimum score requirement. I also asked whether the core skills ( Identification, Analysis and Remedial Action ) were more important than the Client Centred Approach.


This bit was  explained very well as follows…
The Analysis must take place but with an underlying Client Centred approach – in other words, a subjective take on that aspect of the lesson in relation to the pupil including how they felt about…etc.

The planning should also be more around the pupil, but this is where I am little more wary. Asking the pupil what hey would like to do and then having to convince them in whatever manner that  they might not be able to do so seems like a lot of hot air. Having said that, there seems no harm in asking if it turns out that the suggestion is within reason.


6. At last, the DSA have realised that parental  influence is, perhaps, our greatest enemy. Possible ideas are for lower insurance premiums if the parent agrees to a training course themselves to make them more of a help when accompanying their pride and joy, as opposed to a hindrance. I like this idea and it might, at least, give them some idea as what we can be up against. This could, of course, be another opening for the ADI.


Other points…
a.An assessment by an ADI every 3 months, even if the the learner is preparing via some other method, whilst making sure of minimum experience over the year ( 4 seasons driving, as the preferred way seems to be ).

b.Minimum age of 25 to become and ADI ( along with other specifics of qualifications ).

c.Those causing fatal injuries tend to have “previous ” and so are already more than likely know to the police. It is not just an age thing, but background as well…now then, there’s surprise 😉


Hope this has been helpful and I shall be opening this blog up for comment soon – once I’ve downloaded the appropriate  anti spam program. It would seem that some bloggers are a little like some drivers in that they prefer not to play by the rules.



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