New grading system for driving schools
BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN
THE Land Transport Department (LTD) has recently introduced a new system of grading driving schools across the country as a way of maintaining the standards that have been set.
In a phone interview with The Brunei Times, the Acting Director at the Land Transport Department (JPD) said that driving schools will be awarded with either a grade A, B or C depending on how they perform in the four criteria used in grading.
Dr Hj Supry Hj Ladi revealed that the department will look at; the experience and expertise of its driving instructors; vehicles used during driving lessons; classroom used for teaching the Highway Code; as well as its organisation structure when grading the driving schools.
The acting director said the new grading system is one of the approaches taken by JPD to accelerate the development of driving schools in the country and ensure consistency in the learning process.
Additionally, Dr Hj Supry said that the department plans to collect public feedback, and include them in the grading process. “This new system will not solely rely on (the department’s) views and audit process, but will also take into account public feedback.”
He added that among the four criteria mentioned, more empha-sis will be given on the experience and expertise of the driving instructors. With the new grading system, instead of an annual audit, driving schools will be audited bi-annually, as a way of maintaining standards among the driving schools.
Dr Hj Supry said that previously, the audit would take place a few month before the driving school’s permit would be extended.
However, with the new system in place, driving schools awarded with a grade C will be prioritised.
Under the new system, after the audit, driving schools graded with an A or B will have their permit extended by a year, whereas those with grade C will only have their permit extended by six month.
“We focus on driving schools with grade C to give them time to improve their grade before the expiration of their permit,” the act-ing director said, adding that the school’s permit will be extended by a year if it does manage to upgrade itself to a grade B.
The acting director said that he hopes with the new grading sys-tem in place, it will motivate the driving schools to continually improve any shortcomings they may have. He added that the public will not be affected by the grades awarded to the driving schools.
“Where the public chooses to take their license from will not have any effect on the license itself,” said Dr Hj Supry, adding that the concept of the grades is similar to how a restaurant is graded and only serves to encourage the driv-ing schools to actively improve them.
All 22 driving schools have been informed of the new grading sys-tem, and have undergone the first audit, said the acting director.
However, at the moment, the department is currently analysing the marks before finalising it and that it will inform each driving schools their marks in each of the criteria, so that they know which area they need to improve in, he added. He said that the driving schools were consulted and contributed to the introduction of the new grading system.
At the moment, JPD is currently in discussions with driving schools on where these grades will be displayed.
Dr Hj Supry added that the proposed areas include the class-rooms at the driving schools, the Sg Akar Training and Driving Complex and possibly on each of the driving school’s website and the JPD website.
The Brunei Times