Wake’s Driving School offers driver’s ed program to students in North Clark County


Wake’s Driving School in Battle Ground helps prepare teens so they can hit the road equipped with the proper knowledge to drive safely.

In Washington, teens can get their learner’s permit at the age of 15 if they are enrolled in a driver’s ed program or at 15 and half with a knowledge test.

“I think the best thing for a parent is to put yourself in the shoes of a 15-year-old. What do you want this 15-year-old to know?” Wake’s manager Foster Lavender asked. “You don’t want to teach them bad habits, maybe that you picked up on your own. Go back to what’s important: keeping the speed limit, keeping space between yourselves and other vehicles, making sure your stops are full, making sure the kid understands why they are scanning and what they are scanning for (while stopped).”

An article by defensivedriving.org states it’s important for drivers to be attentive and to know the right of way.

Paying attention to a driver’s surroundings is also important. Sometimes the sirens of emergency vehicles are not loud enough so drivers are encouraged to check their rearview mirrors consistently.

Wake’s Driving School offers 15 classes for teens that take five or seven weeks to complete.

During a driver’s ed program, those in the class are required to complete six drives with an instructor.

“The first drive that they do is really just getting them comfortable, going out on back roads as we don’t know how much experience they’ve had with their parents, allowing them to get a feel of the car, stopping (and) going,” Lavender said. “We work on them coming to the side of the road and re-entering traffic. Our goal by the end of that first drive is to get them out and doing lane changes on Main Street here in Battle Ground.”

Drive four, the freeway drive, occurs a month or two into the driving portion of the program. Lavender said most students already have some freeway experience beforehand with their parents, but he added it’s OK if they don’t.

According to state laws, new drivers must have 50 hours of driving time before they are allowed to get their license. Most of those hours occur outside of a driver’s ed program.

Important things to know are the right of way of driving, which can sometimes be confusing to drivers or even forgotten. Pedestrians always have the right of way at crosswalks. Intersections with stop signs should be navigated on a first-come, first-served basis. If someone comes to a stop simultaneously with another vehicle, the vehicle on the right always has the right of way.

Knowing the right of way in a roundabout is also important, defensivedriving.org stated in the article. The traffic inside of the roundabout always has the right of way. If a person pulls up to the yield portion outside of a roundabout as another vehicle approaches their yield portion, drivers can enter the roundabout as long as they save enough room for the traffic within it.

Leaving three to four seconds of space between the vehicle in front of a person is also a great method to follow, according to defensivedriving.org. Maintaining a safe distance allows the driver a safe amount of time to apply the brakes if the car in front of them does the same.

Wake’s Driving School is the only driver’s ed program in Battle Ground. They are located at 105 W. Main St., Unit 103, in Battle Ground.

For more information, call 360-666-3025 or email info@wakes driving.com.