Until February 9, 2016, I kept five or six recent/current/new recommendations on this page. However, I have now been in business for more than ten years and trained more than 1,700 drivers, covering 6,800 lessons and over 8,000 hours of training and more than 190,000 miles. I no longer invest the time to keep current recommendations on this page.
Besides that, most recommendations on most web sites list only a first name and city, followed by some glowing positive words. No one checks the validity of those recommendations. Most companies who who use untraceable-generic reference lie about them. I did not, but what is their verifiable value? I do excellent work and am always in the process of teaching new students who are the younger siblings of previous students. Returning clients with more students to each is an ongoing testimony of recommendations. If you require some personal testimonies, let me know and I will give you as many as you want.
After serving more than 4,200 people (1,700 drivers and more than 2,500 clients) I can tell you that, to the best of my knowledge, there are twelve people who do not like me. No one can please everyone!
By any criteria, 4,188 happy people out of 4,200 served is a great service record.
Let me serve you. I do a superior job of training and believe in providing a dramatically high level of customer service.
I will treat you like my father or mother if you are 20-years or more older than me, like my sibling if you are near my age, like my own child or grand child if you are 20-years younger than I am.
I promise my best efforts on your behalf and I will treat you with great consideration and the highest respect.
Here is my mindset. If you are ever unhappy about anything, let me know and I will do everything in my power to make you happy. The only things I will not consider are reducing my prices, because my service is worth every penny and more.
This may be the only time and the only place where you will hear or read about these free benefits. Time is money and the more time we spend trying to convince people to take things from us for FREE the less likely we will be able to offer FREE things.
None of these FREE or money saving opportunities are guaranteed because we do not know the future.
We reserve the right to alter, add or delete any service/offer at any time. Service value only. No cash value.
One thing to remember about FREE and money saving offers is that there are, usually, some kind of limitations or restrictions. These FREE offers are no different. We try to be gracious with the limitations, but limits are necessary to keep the less-scrupled from taking advantage of our generosity.
Please avail yourself to as many offers for which you qualify. We are delighted to provide them to you.
In First person ("I", "We" or "Me") is reference to Joda Collins or the Joda Collins Driving Academy. Any second person reference ("You") is a reference to the Client (financially responsible person) or the Student-driver.
MEMORIZE THE LANE CHANGE PROCEDURE
You will need to memorize the following as the first thing for your first lesson:
"Ahead, Behind, Mirror, Shoulder, Signal,
Ahead, Behind, Mirror, Shoulder, Move."
You can memorize these words on your own time for FREE before the first lesson or during paid driving time.
I am not the least bit adverse to using paid behind-the-wheel time to help any student memorize anything and/or everything. The choice is yours. Either way works for me.
FREE PARKING AND THREE POINT TURN TRAINING IF YOU DO THE FOLLOWING BEFORE ASKING FOR PARKING AND THREE POINT TURN TRAINING
1). Memorize well enough to quote without hesitation and upon request the procedure above that begins with "Ahead, Behind....":
2. Memorize well enough to quote without hesitation and upon request the parking and three point turn procedures found at www.jodacollins.com, Agreement page, Section One, red print. If parking and three-point turn is part of your training goal you can memorize the steps on your own time for free rather than pay by the minute to memorize the steps during paid driving time. Find the steps on this web site on the Agreement page, section one, colored print. You can opt to memorize all of it, or part of it in these sections (1). Entering a parking space. (2). Existing a parking space. (3). The three point turn up until transmission is placed in reverse. (4). Three point turn from the time the car is placed in reverse to the acceleration out of the three point turn procedure. You must ask for this benefit. It is not automatic.
3. Parking and/or Three Point Turn training occurs no later than the start of lesson three and no sooner than the driver scores at least 90 points on our General Safety Point list.
4. We use the Client's or Driver's car for parking and three point turn training and not the Joda Collins Academy vehicle for parking and three point turn training.
5. Driver and/or Client provides at least a 24 hour notice of when driver is going to ask for parking and/or three point turn training.
HAND OVER HAND STEERING
There is no such thing as a perfect steering method. Every steering method has positives and negatives. You, as the driver, have to determine what list of positives and negatives you prefer. Unless otherwise directed, I use and teach 10/2 hand-over-hand steering. You can learn hand-over-hand steering on your own time for FREE if you want to.
To learn 10-2 hand-over-hand steering go to:
RULES OF THE ROAD
You can pay by the minute for me to tell you the rules of the road or you can learn them on your own time for FREE. The best resource for the rules of the road is found in Chapters 4 through 9 of:
Driving schools make more money when the vehicle is setting still and the Instructor is explaining the rules of the road, the meaning of signs, signals and road painting and/or safe-defensive driving skills to the Student-driver. I wrote a book that clarifies all of these things. Each lesson is designed to cover about 30-pages of that Workbook for the average student. A student-driver can read the information for FREE on his or her own time in preparation for each driving lesson starting with lesson two,l rather than pay me by the minute to tell you the same things during paid driving time. This means you get more behind-the-wheel training every lesson.
Most drivers progress up to twice as fast through driver's training and at half the expense when completing the assigned optional homework.
To get the most, read the first 10 pages before the start of lesson one. The workbook is attached to the first email you receive from us. You can by a used but in good condition paperback copy from Mr. Collins at your first meeting with him for $20.00. You can keep it or return it in good condition (normal wear from considerate use acceptable) and get your $20 back at the end of your training. You can order a new copy on line at:
EVALUATIONS AND SUGGESTIONS
After most (not all) lessons the Student-driver receives or can receive upon request, an email that has important information that needs to be shared with the Client and/or Student-driver before the next lesson begins. Sharing that information verbally takes about 10-minutes at the start of each lesson to read and clarify to the Student-driver.
Drivers who read the information email (Evaluation/Suggestions) between lessons turn that 10-minutes from listening while the car is stationary into driving time.
AFTER LESSON CONFERENCE WITH CLIENT
Most Clients want a report of progress after each lesson. Driving schools are happy to provide it and the Instructor arrives five or 10-minutes in order to have the time to share with the Client. However, as stated, most driving schools take that time from the driver's behind-the-wheel training. I do not. I resolve the Client's need for information one or more of three ways.
1. After the lesson, if the Client approaches my vehicle upon arrival (at the end of the lesson) of asks for a brief report after the lesson ends, I will engage in a brief conversation with the Client at my expense and on my time.
2. The email I send or make available upon request after most lessons is designed to provide the information most Client's ask.
3. Any Client and/or Student-driver can call 850 981-3355 and ask for any information anytime he or she wants.
LEARN FROM THE INTERNET
When I first started this business (2008) there was very little on the Internet about safe-driving and or defensive-driving skills/techniques. Now there is a plethora of information! If you are struggling with something, whether it be steering, braking, rules of the road or anything else, just type in to your search engine,
"you tube", followed by anything you want to know such as "right turns in vehicle".
and you will get a great deal of information. Learn if for FREE on your own time and use paid behind the wheel time for practicing what you learned. Save money!
If you need any help finding anything on the Internet for your behind-the-wheel progress, let us know and we will find it for you and email you the link.
DISCLAIMER: Not everything on the Internet is good, some is contradictory to other Internet sites and some is contradictory to what I teach. Thank you for not challenging anything I am teaching you by introducing contradictory methods with the words, "But, I saw on the Internet...."
Unless you are directed to this section, you can ignore it.
ESTIMATING THE FUTURE PROGRESS
for anyone is not easy as there are many variables that are out of my control. This is my best, most educated guess and assumes driver will take at least one lesson per week, will do no less than three hours of self study in the workbook in prep for each lesson and turn in the written work, unsolicited, at the start of each lesson, and maintains a positive attitude toward driver's training. It is important to understand I am devoted to teaching the driver to be as safe as he can be, not be as safe as others might be. I suggest Parent's evaluate the drivers progress after each lesson or two and only continue training if progress meets parents and/or drivers satisfaction. Also, sometimes drivers reach a skill level that the driver and/or the client feels is generally safe among other safe drivers before I reach that skill level as I define it. Or, sometimes, driver reach a level of defensive driving that satisfied the driver and/or the parent before I reach a level of defensive driving safety I am shooting for. If that happens earlier than my estimate of progress, just quit. All unused funds requested with at least 24 hours notice are refundable upon request. Rebates are on actual lessons taken, not on lessons scheduled but not taken.
PURPOSE OF PROGRESS REPORTS
Progress reports focus on driving needs not positives because these are free reports. To keep them free we must make them as brief as possible. Plus, driving needs will cause crashes, not driving positives. Just because we mention few or no positives, does not mean that many positives do not exist. Drivers who read and think about the content of Progress Reports always progress faster and at less expense compared to drivers who do not read and think about the content of Progress Reports! Save Money!!!
1. WALKER'S TURNS (WIDE RIGHT TURNS). Rather than turning the vehicle into standard 45 degree right turns with right front time no more than four feet from the right curb at least half way through the turn, drive is waiting until the front right tire passes three to six feet past the designated proper start location for the right turn to begin steering fully or mostly into his or her right turn.
2. STOP A FOOT BEHIND STOP SIGNS AND BARS
3. THE THREE-POINT TURN PROCEDURE AND PARKING
Be sure to look both was before removing foot from brake.
4. FOLLOW THE VEHICLE AHEAD OF YOU AT A SEVEN SECOND FOLLOWING DISTANCE.
5. BE AT 23MPH ON FULL BLOCK BEFORE YOUR STOP LOCATION IF YOU HAVE TIME TO GRACEFULLY REACH 23MPH ONE BLOCK AWAY. DO HALF OF YOUR BREAKING IN THE FIRST HALF OF THE REMAINING BLOCK AND HALF OF YOUR BRAKING IN THE LAST HALF OF THAT BLOCK. If you do not have the space or time to bring your car down to 23mph one block away from a stop location, do half of your braking in the first half of the space you have and half of your breaking in the last half.
6. DELAY ACCELERATION FOR TWO SECONDS AFTER THE VEHICLE AHEAD OF YOU BEGINS MOVING. And then accelerate no faster than one mph slower than the vehicle ahead of you until you have your full seven seconds following distance.
7. GREEN DOES NOT MEAN GO, it means go when safe and you cannot know if it is safe unless you first check left and right.
8. WHEN APPROACHING A GREEN TRAFFIC LIGHT AND THE VEHICLE AHEAD OF YOU HAS BRAKE LIGHTS ON, TREAT THE GREEN LIGHT LIKE A RED LIGHT.
9. STOPPING DISTANCE: My best guess is that driver thinks car will stop five to six times faster than it will actually stop which is a major contributing factor to student diving too fast for conditions. We walked of minimum stopping distance in the hopes this will help driver realize he is driving too fast for his skill level all of the time and too fast for my skill level much of the time.
10. INADEQUATE FEAR: While not uncommon for new drivers, it is, nonetheless, extremely dangerous not to have adequate fear of just how serious crashing can be and how easy it is to get into a crash. One mistake behind the wheel can cost an arm, leg, sight, mind and even a life and it happens in a matter of seconds. Driver is too calm. Not that I want drivers to be nervous. The opposite of calm is not nervous or agitated. By calm I mean at rest or casual. The opposite of at rest/calm is mentally sharp and emotionally involved. For example, when a surgeon is operating we do not what him to be mentally and emotionally disengaged; we want the surgeon mentally and emotionally (mind and heart) engaged with a sense of life and death seriousness. There is a certain amount of godly fear that is necessary to drive safely. I do not think driver really understands on an emotional or logical level that he can get killed in a split second after he makes one wrong driving decision or that he can get killed in a split second if a driver near him makes one wrong driving decision. Unless a driver able to develop the right degree of godly fear, we call that "lacks the maturity to be entrusted with a vehicle that can kill or cripple in a split second." At the start of all three lessons that defined the driver. I am trying to instill the proper level of godly fear in the driver before the crash, or loss of limb or life does it for him. This is not criticism of the driver. Our society denotes those under 18 as children. However, driving is not an activity a child should be doing. Once behind the wheel a person has to think and act on a adult level no matter his or her age; maturity must come quickly. It is time, now. Some progress was made today, I think. If parents approve I suggest driver watch the following. Most people curse when they crash. To avoid hearing cursing, watch with no volume.
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