Starting April, the Land Transportation Office will require student permit applicants to undergo a 15-hour driving seminar. Under Memorandum circular no. 2019-2176, the student’s permit will be issued upon completion of the mandatory theoretical driving course to be conducted by the LTO or its duly accredited driving school. It shall be completed within 2 years from the start of the course.
The 15-hour driving course is divided into three sessions with 5 hours each. The training will include an introduction to driving, road and traffic rules, and pre-driving orientation and motor vehicle basic parts, functions, and operations.
A scholarship program may be given to indigents and deserving students by the driving school as part of its community road safety advocacy.
After the completion of the training, an applicant will receive a completion certificate. The amount to be paid was not mentioned in the memorandum but it instructs that the driving school shall clearly specify the amount paid by the student in the Official Receipt.
For the driving course centers that will apply for accreditation, they need to pay P5,000 for a 90-day provincial permit pending approval of accreditation.
In addition to the 15-hour requirement, the LTO said that it would be setting up its own driving schools in each region. The agency stated it aims to provide affordable driving classes through the schools.
In an interview with LTO deputy director for Law Enforcement Roberto Valera, he said that a driver’s license should be considered a privilege, and not a right. Hence, they can invoke anyone’s license once a person violates the law.
There were 40,000 drivers who violated the traffic rules in 2019. Much higher number compared to 18,000 violators in 2018 according to LTO.