The deal on the table proposes funding drivers education programs at the current level of more than $26 million. Rep. Verla Insko, D-Orange, said the main concession is that the General Assembly will continue to evaluate the program, leaving drivers education vulnerable to a similar threat of defunding next May.
“I’m glad that we have funding this year. I think that it’s a really important program that we need to continue,” Insko said.
Mark Smith, North Carolina Driving School’s director of operations, said the state distributes money to county school systems based on the number of freshman. But after reductions, the budget distributes only $191 per student, he said. The money is hardly enough to support the program.
“Really funding needs to be about $250 per student,” Smith said. “But you have to be able to work with what funding is provided.”