|TRUCK DRIVING SCHOOLS||CDL TRAINING||CDL CLASSES||CDL SCHOOLS|
|TRUCKING SCHOOLS||CDL DRIVING SCHOOLS||HOW TO GET A CDL||TRUCK DRIVER TRAINING|
|TRUCK DRIVING TRAINING||TRUCKER SCHOOLS|
How to Assess a Truck Driver School
As soon as you have decided which Commercial Drivers License you want to pursue, you can begin the undertaking of evaluating the Bellflower CA truck driver schools that you are considering. As already mentioned, cost and location will undoubtedly be your primary concerns. But it can't be emphasized enough that they should not be your sole concerns. Other variables, including the reputations of the schools or the experience of the instructors are similarly or even more important. So below are some additional things that you need to research while carrying out your due diligence prior to choosing, and particularly paying for, your truck driving training.
Are the Schools Accredited or Certified ? Very few truck driving schools in the Bellflower CA area are accredited due to the rigorous process and expense to the schools. However, certification is more commonplace and is offered by the Professional Truck Driver Institute (PTDI). A school is not obligated to become certified, but there are several advantages. Prospective students know that the training will be of the highest quality, and that they will receive an ample amount of driving time. As an example, PTDI calls for 44 hours of actual driving time, not ride-alongs or simulations. So if a school's program is certified (the program, not the school is certified), students know that the curriculum and training will measure up to the very high standards set by PTDI.
How Long in Operation? One clue to help assess the quality of a truck driver school is how long it has been in business. A poorly reviewed or a fly by night school normally will not be in business very long, so longevity is a plus. On the other hand, even the best of Bellflower CA schools had to start from their first day of training, so use it as one of multiple qualifications. You can also find out what the school's track record is concerning successful licensing and employment of its graduates. If a school won't provide those numbers, search elsewhere. The schools should additionally maintain relationships with regional and national trucking firms. Having a large number of contacts not only points to a superior reputation within the trade, but also bolsters their job assistance program for students. It also wouldn't hurt to check with the California licensing department to confirm that the CDL trucking schools you are reviewing are in compliance.
How Effective is the Training? As a minimum requirement, the schools must be licensed in California and hire instructors that are trained and experienced. We will discuss more about the teachers in the next segment. Also, the student to instructor ratio should be no greater than 4 to 1. If it's any greater, then students will not be receiving the personalized attention they will need. This is particularly true regarding the one-on-one instruction for behind the wheel training. And watch out for any school that professes it can teach you to drive trucks in a relatively short period of time. Learning to be a truck driver and to drive a tractor trailer skillfully takes time. Most Bellflower CA schools offer training courses that run from three weeks to as long as two months, based on the license class or type of vehicle.
How Good are the Instructors? As already stated, it's important that the instructors are trained to teach driving techniques and experienced as both drivers and instructors. Although a number of states have minimum driving time requirements to be certified as an instructor, the more successful driving experience an instructor has the better. It's also vital that the instructors stay current with industry advancements or any new laws or changes in regulations. Assessing instructors may be a bit more subjective than other criteria, and perhaps the ideal method is to pay a visit to the school and talk to the teachers in person. You can also speak with some of the students going through the training and find out if they are happy with the level of instruction and the teacher's ability to train them.
Sufficient Driving Time? Most importantly, a good trucking school will furnish ample driving time to its students. After all, isn't that what it's all about? Driving time is the actual time spent behind the wheel operating a truck. Although the use of simulators and ride-a-longs with other students are essential training tools, they are no replacement for real driving. The more training that a student receives behind the wheel, the better driver she or he will become. And even though driving time differs between schools, a reasonable standard is a minimum of 32 hours. If the school is PTDI certified, it will provide at least 44 hours of driving time. Check with the Bellflower CA schools you are considering and ask how much driving time they provide.
Are they Independent or Captive ? It's possible to get discounted or even free training from some trucking schools if you make a commitment to be a driver for a specified carrier for a defined time period. This is called contract training, and the schools that provide it are called captives. So rather than having relationships with a wide range of trucking lines that they can refer their students to, captives only refer to one company. The benefit is receiving less expensive or even free training by giving up the freedom to initially work wherever you have an opportunity. Obviously contract training has the potential to restrict your income opportunities when starting out. But for some it may be the best way to obtain affordable training. Just be sure to inquire if the Bellflower CA schools you are looking at are captive or independent so that you can make an informed decision.
Offer CDL Testing Onsite? There are some states that will permit third party CDL testing onsite of truck driving schools for its graduates. If onsite testing is available in California, ask if the schools you are looking at are DMV certified to provide it. One benefit is that it is more convenient than contending with graduates of other schools for test times at California testing locations. It is also an indication that the DMV considers the approved schools to be of a superior quality.
Are the Classes Convenient? As previously noted, truck driving training is just one to two months long. With such a brief duration, it's essential that the Bellflower CA school you select offers flexibility for both the scheduling of classes and the curriculum. As an example, if you're having difficulty learning a certain driving maneuver, then the teacher should be prepared to devote more time with you until you are proficient. And if you're still holding a job while attending training, then the class scheduling must be flexible enough to accommodate working hours or other commitments.
Is Job Assistance Provided? The moment you have attained your CDL license after graduating from truck driver school, you will be keen to start your new profession. Make sure that the schools you are reviewing have job assistance programs. Find out what their job placement percentage is and what average salary their graduates start at. Also, find out which local and national trucking companies their graduates are placed with for employment. If a school has a low job placement rate or few Bellflower CA employers recruiting their grads, it may be a sign to look elsewhere.
Is Financial Assistance Available? Truck driver schools are much like colleges and other Bellflower CA area technical or vocational schools when it comes to loans and other forms of financial assistance being available. Find out if the schools you are evaluating have a financial aid department, or at least someone who can help you navigate the options and forms that need to be completed.