• Driver Education Classroom Syllabus
    Instructor: Mr. McNitt
    Email: rcmcnitt@tyrone.k12.pa.us   
    Phone: 684-4240, ext. 3208

    Academic Credit: This class is worth ¼ credit toward graduation. If you choose to drop the class, you must do so within 10 days of the start of the course. After that, it becomes a Withdrawal Failure and is recorded as a class failure in your transcripts.

    Classroom Instruction: The classroom phase is taught to all students in grades 10 – 12 during after-school hours. The state requires that classroom instruction must equal a minimum of 30 hours - meaning that a student may NOT miss more than 2 classes during the school year or 1 class during the summer. If a student misses more than this he/she will automatically fail the class regardless of his/her grade. Should this become an issue, the student and parent/guardian MUST speak to Mr. McNitt immediately following the absence. There is no charge for taking this after-school class.

    Behind the Wheel (BTW) Component: Students must be 16 years of age, have a valid permit or operator’s license, and have completed classroom instruction in order to enroll in the BTW phase of the program. Students may pay the $45 fee at the Main Office. Students must log six (6) hours in the driver education car with an instructor. It is recommended that a student have 45 + hours of BTW time with their parents before they request BTW instruction from the district. Parents, please remember that you must complete 65 hours of BTW time with your student before he/she gets a license (50 regular driving, 10 nighttime, 5 inclement weather). Our school driving hours count toward this total. Completion of both phases of the program will make the student eligible for most insurance reduction programs if an “80%” average is maintained in the classroom. BTW is taught after school at a cost of $45.

    Course Objectives:

    Upon the completion of the course each student will be able to:

    1. Identify and explain Pennsylvania laws and
    2. Identify, describe and assess vehicle
    3. Describe and identify perceptual skills development/strategies.
    4. Identify and describe decision-making and risk
    5. Identify and describe a multitude of driving
    6. Define, evaluate and analyze influences upon driver

    Student Behavior: (Parent’s please be sure to read this section)

    This class is the student’s first step toward driving. In most instances, he/she will be driving a car in less than a year following this class. This is the first step toward that goal. Driver’s Education requires that the student be attentive at all times. Disruptive behavior will not be tolerated. If the student isn’t able to remain focused and well behaved, it isn’t likely he/she will be a responsible and careful driver.  Unlike a math or history class, there are no “do-overs” behind the wheel.  One bad decision is all it takes to alter a life forever. My job is to make sure that I put responsible drivers on our roads. In light of this, any disruptive behavior will result in removal from the course.

    If parents wish to see their student’s academic progress or if the student is having disciplinary issues in the class the parent only need to get online to view the class grades, in particular the participation grades. A participation grade consists of 15 points, given for each week (6 total). The student starts with the full points and keeps them as long as the student participates and is a contributing member of the class. This is intended to hold them accountable for their time in the class. They only lose these points if they come unprepared, are unwilling to participate, or disrupt the class. If they have less than 15 points for that assignment, you can be sure that there was an issue that week.  Because this is an after-school class and is strictly voluntary, the teacher has the authority to remove a student from the course.

    Daily Required Materials

    1.  Textbook

    You will be provided with a course textbook: Responsible Driving. You will be asked to sign out Responsible Driving at the beginning of the course and you will be held responsible for its care. You will be charged for the replacement cost of the book ($25) should it be lost or damaged. 

    2.  Classroom Handouts

    The teacher will provide handouts – it is your job to keep track of them. If you lose your work you may copy it from the online site found at our district homepage, high school, staff pages, McNitt.

    3.    Portfolio

    You are required to complete a portfolio for this course. It will be provided to you.  It is almost impossible to pass this class without completing it.  You will have some time to work on this during class, the rest of the work will involve out-of-class time.

    4.  Folder for class notes

    You will be provided with one folder that will be used to hold your class notes, etc. You will NOT use your textbook for the purpose of organizing/storing your course material. You will be expected to replace the folder at your cost should it be lost or damaged. You may use the folder for your portfolio when submitting at the end of the course.

    5.    Pen or Pencil – come prepared by bringing one to class!!

    General Expectations

    1. Classroom rules: Students and teacher will always be respectful, prepared, positive, responsible, and we will do our best!

    This classroom is a “Safe Zone” area. This means that the teacher “respects all aspects of people including race, ethnicity, gender expression, sexual orientation, socio-economic background, age, religion, and ability” and expects his students to do the same.

    2.  Tardiness: Be here by 3:05. Three tardies will result in a

    3.  Absences: It is the student’s responsibility to make up all missed work. In most cases, the student will know what is due and should bring it in the first day back to school. If need be the student may speak to me to make special arrangements, but it is the student’s responsibility. If you do not complete the assignments by the due date and have not spoken with me concerning the reasons why you cannot complete the work, you will receive a “Zero” for the

    4.  Class Participation: All students are expected to participate in class in a positive manner and positive class participation is included in your grade. Please respect the contributions of the teacher and your classmates, but do not be afraid to respectfully challenge other people’s opinions – the ability to respectfully disagree is a vital part of good

    5.  Hall passes: There are none for this class.

    6.  Cell phones/headphones/other electronic devices: We have different rules after school than we do during school. You may use your phones, but only with teacher permission.  If a parent/guardian reaches out to you during class, you may exit, deal with the issue in the hallway and return right to class.  If it is your best buddy or significant other, tell them to contact you after class!  You may use music devices of your choice (headphones) during class work, but NO other time. 

    7.  Academic honesty: Students are expected to abide by the ethical standards of honesty and integrity when preparing and presenting work. Cheating and plagiarizing (including copying other students’ homework/portfolios) will not be tolerated. Zeros will be given for all students involved, as well as a disciplinary

    8.  Computer Assignments: If we are forced to go remote, you are to complete the hardcopy assignments, take pictures and submit to me through rcmcnitt@tasd.us.

    Please use my website for access to classroom worksheets, etc.  Go to district homepage, high school, staff pages, McNitt, and Driver’s Education.

    9.  If you are struggling: My door is open and I am here to help you, JUST ASK!


    Grading Policies

    Marking Period Grades – Students are here for 17 classes, which isn’t much. They are provided with many opportunities to be evaluated and to keep their grades up, receiving in excess of 1000 points during this class. This is done for the benefit of the student. If a student has a few poor performances, he/she has ample opportunity to dig themselves out of the hole.

    Your grades will be based on the following criteria:

    1.  Tests/ Projects/Writing Assignments 

      • Most units will conclude with a traditional exam of 10 - 20 questions. Unit tests will typically consist of multiple-choice, matching, or fill in the blank.
      • If you are absent on a test day or a due date for a project or other assignment, you must turn in assignments or take the test the day you return to school (of course, in the event of a extended excused absences, special arraignments can and will be made).

    2. Homework/In-Class Assignments 

    • Homework assignments are peer-graded and entered weekly by your teacher.
    • If you are absent, it is your responsibility to make up missed work. Please check Sapphire for outstanding assignments that you may have You are required to request any additional activity sheets, rubrics, etc. that you may have missed. Missed work is your responsibility.
    • Any other makeup work (homework, projects, and in-class assignments) must be personally given to your teacher, not placed on his desk, when you return to school, unless other arrangements have been made with me.  After that time, your work will be counted as a zero.
    • Late assignments will not be accepted after a unit is completed. Please pay attention to deadlines – I will not be able to help you if you come to me after the fact and ask to make up assignments from earlier

    3.  Participation

    You will have the chance to earn 90 (5 ½ weeks) points through their participation in class. Participation will include:

    • Class tardiness
    • Participation & behavior in class
    • Prepared for class

    4.  Portfolio

    Each student is required to complete a portfolio. The portfolio will account for 500 points, a significant portion of your entire grade. For this reason, it is imperative that you pay close attention to this project. The teacher will provide the rubric/guidelines.