Bad CDL School Experience...need Advice Please...

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studpuppy28's Comment
member avatar

I attended CDL school but did not finish because the teacher didn't complete his teaching tasks for me and I have yet to even perform some backing up exercises. I asked the school and they would not let me practice more and wanted me to test when I wasn't ready. we wasted time and did not stay on the pad and practice like they should have let me do. The contract was not fulfilled on the school's part; what should I do?

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.
Starcar's Comment
member avatar

Well...the sad thing is, that if it went to court, it would be a "he said, she said" kinda thing. But since you signed up to pay for your schooling, i'm afraid your stuck on that one. contact them, and arrange for a payment deal. And you can ask them for a reduced rate, since you didn't get your cdl...but I doubt they will give it to you....Good Luck...that kinda situation is a bummer. CDL schools now hold the same legal spot as any other school in the nation. Any time you sign up and say you will pay..that is construed as agreeing to repay a "STUDENT LOAN". It is legally collectible in all meaning of the law. You can't banko on it, you can't out run it...So just chalk it up to a bad experience, and arrange to pay it off. Thats why alot of newbies go to truck company sponsored schools. Its a different deal....Kinda....

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.
Old School's Comment
member avatar

Studpuppy, welcome to the forum! I'm a little confused here, because your profile shows you as an experienced driver, but then you've got this question about your schooling. But, I'm gonna assume you are just getting into this, and since we don't have a whole lot of detailed information from you I'm going to take a stab at answering this and hope I'm interpreting the missing facts correctly.

You say you "didn't finish". Does that mean you quit? It's hard for me to imagine a legitimate driving school to just drop you and not get you to the point of being ready for the driving test. Not many of us felt like we were really ready for it when we went for our driving test, and we get folks in here all the time begging for advice because they are so anxious about their driving test. No one becomes a professional driver at Truck Driving School, all they do is barely get you far enough along so that you can pass the test and get your CDL. That's why when you get a job as an inexperienced truck driver you will spend about a month in a truck with a trainer whose job is to try his best to get you finished off a little bit just so they can start to feel a little bit comfortable with turning you loose in one of their high dollar pieces of equipment.

Driving a truck proficiently takes time and lots of practice. All during your first year as a driver you will be continually learning everyday. There is just no way for you to become proficient by going through a school. If you are still in school I encourage you to go take the driving test, your instructors would not have wanted you to test if they didn't think you could pass.

If I'm totally wrong in my assessment here I apologize, but I just have a hard time believing they just didn't take the time to get you far enough along to pass the driving test.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

studpuppy28's Comment
member avatar

Old school: i didn't finish cuz they wouldn't let me practice backing up thats the part we didnt have time for becuz my teacher's truck broke down for two weeks and that was the time we needed to be on the pad practicing i have yet to be taught the parallel parking maneuvers my instructor told the fleet manager and dispatcher i was a good driver on the 2nd day out on the road across america , I was doin most of the driving we were out almost 2 months so that is my experience and i am still new i was all over New England and NY and PA mostly never got a ticket never did anything wrong i could pass the test tomorrow probably but i wanna be certain i havent taken it yet except for the permit which i aced the first time i missed only 2 questions on the written test for the permit but i still have a lot to learn and my teacher was not wanting to stay and practice with me since he lost two weeks drive time because of his broken down truck u r from Nac? I am from East TX too glad 2 know ya

Studpuppy, welcome to the forum! I'm a little confused here, because your profile shows you as an experienced driver, but then you've got this question about your schooling. But, I'm gonna assume you are just getting into this, and since we don't have a whole lot of detailed information from you I'm going to take a stab at answering this and hope I'm interpreting the missing facts correctly.

You say you "didn't finish". Does that mean you quit? It's hard for me to imagine a legitimate driving school to just drop you and not get you to the point of being ready for the driving test. Not many of us felt like we were really ready for it when we went for our driving test, and we get folks in here all the time begging for advice because they are so anxious about their driving test. No one becomes a professional driver at Truck Driving School, all they do is barely get you far enough along so that you can pass the test and get your CDL. That's why when you get a job as an inexperienced truck driver you will spend about a month in a truck with a trainer whose job is to try his best to get you finished off a little bit just so they can start to feel a little bit comfortable with turning you loose in one of their high dollar pieces of equipment.

Driving a truck proficiently takes time and lots of practice. All during your first year as a driver you will be continually learning everyday. There is just no way for you to become proficient by going through a school. If you are still in school I encourage you to go take the driving test, your instructors would not have wanted you to test if they didn't think you could pass.

If I'm totally wrong in my assessment here I apologize, but I just have a hard time believing they just didn't take the time to get you far enough along to pass the driving test.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

Dispatcher:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

Fleet Manager:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Old School's Comment
member avatar

Studpuppy, you've got to help me out here. I'm even more confused now, and I want to help you out. My concern is that you get a certificate for your training. That certificate is more important for a new driver than the CDL itself. No one will hire a new driver without that certificate - it is going to be required by their insurance carrier that you successfully completed so many hours of certified training. And the only acceptable proof of that is the certificate.

Now, from your response it sounds like you were in a company sponsored training program. Am I right in that assumption? And are you still in that program? Because if you left and didn't finish they will be hounding you for payment for what they did. Fill in some details for me and I'll do my best to advise you on what to do.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

Company Sponsored Training:

A Company-Sponsored Training Program is a school that is owned and operated by a trucking company.

The schooling often requires little or no money up front. Instead of paying up-front tuition you will sign an agreement to work for the company for a specified amount of time after graduation, usually around a year, at a slightly lower rate of pay in order to pay for the training.

If you choose to quit working for the company before your year is up, they will normally require you to pay back a prorated amount of money for the schooling. The amount you pay back will be comparable to what you would have paid if you went to an independently owned school.

Company-sponsored training can be an excellent way to get your career underway if you can't afford the tuition up front for private schooling.

studpuppy28's Comment
member avatar

Old school, I asked them to let me finish my course the fleet manager said no there wasn't enough time. I have yet to be taught the parallel parking and my teacher only did a few of the maneuvers a couple of times each. That is not adequate to learn proper backing. My teacher's rig broke down for two weeks almost and that caused us to miss valuable time on the pad that we were supposed to have. I asked them to let me practice with a driver who was willing on his off hours and stay at the pad and train with me and they said No again. The person in charge of the whole training program wants me to be there but the fleet manager is not aware of this and has told me no so far. does that help explain it?

Studpuppy, you've got to help me out here. I'm even more confused now, and I want to help you out. My concern is that you get a certificate for your training. That certificate is more important for a new driver than the CDL itself. No one will hire a new driver without that certificate - it is going to be required by their insurance carrier that you successfully completed so many hours of certified training. And the only acceptable proof of that is the certificate.

Now, from your response it sounds like you were in a company sponsored training program. Am I right in that assumption? And are you still in that program? Because if you left and didn't finish they will be hounding you for payment for what they did. Fill in some details for me and I'll do my best to advise you on what to do.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

Fleet Manager:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

Company Sponsored Training:

A Company-Sponsored Training Program is a school that is owned and operated by a trucking company.

The schooling often requires little or no money up front. Instead of paying up-front tuition you will sign an agreement to work for the company for a specified amount of time after graduation, usually around a year, at a slightly lower rate of pay in order to pay for the training.

If you choose to quit working for the company before your year is up, they will normally require you to pay back a prorated amount of money for the schooling. The amount you pay back will be comparable to what you would have paid if you went to an independently owned school.

Company-sponsored training can be an excellent way to get your career underway if you can't afford the tuition up front for private schooling.

TailGunner (Ken M)'s Comment
member avatar

So what you haven't told us yet is if you were in a private trucking school, or at an actual trucking company learning to drive from their company sponsored training. Who is "they"? Whose truck broke down? Is he a trucking company driver/trainer, or an instructor at a trucking school? This is all good information needed to help advise you. Thanks.

Company Sponsored Training:

A Company-Sponsored Training Program is a school that is owned and operated by a trucking company.

The schooling often requires little or no money up front. Instead of paying up-front tuition you will sign an agreement to work for the company for a specified amount of time after graduation, usually around a year, at a slightly lower rate of pay in order to pay for the training.

If you choose to quit working for the company before your year is up, they will normally require you to pay back a prorated amount of money for the schooling. The amount you pay back will be comparable to what you would have paid if you went to an independently owned school.

Company-sponsored training can be an excellent way to get your career underway if you can't afford the tuition up front for private schooling.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
studpuppy28's Comment
member avatar

He is a trainer at a company sponsored school it was a company truck he did not finish his teaching tasks while we were on the pad i don't wanna pay them unless they let me finish the school and give me my certificate tht was the agreement and they have to fulfill their part of the contract. It's not my fault that my teacher's truck broke down and we didn't makeit back to the terminal yard in time to finish practicing. Plus he stayed out on the road way too long wanting to get loads. The company paid him to teach me but he took the cash and PLUS got the loads ya see what I mean ? he was earning double and if they paid him for my driving miles he actually made triple

So what you haven't told us yet is if you were in a private trucking school, or at an actual trucking company learning to drive from their company sponsored training. Who is "they"? Whose truck broke down? Is he a trucking company driver/trainer, or an instructor at a trucking school? This is all good information needed to help advise you. Thanks.

Terminal:

A facility where trucking companies operate out of, or their "home base" if you will. A lot of major companies have multiple terminals around the country which usually consist of the main office building, a drop lot for trailers, and sometimes a repair shop and wash facilities.

Company Sponsored Training:

A Company-Sponsored Training Program is a school that is owned and operated by a trucking company.

The schooling often requires little or no money up front. Instead of paying up-front tuition you will sign an agreement to work for the company for a specified amount of time after graduation, usually around a year, at a slightly lower rate of pay in order to pay for the training.

If you choose to quit working for the company before your year is up, they will normally require you to pay back a prorated amount of money for the schooling. The amount you pay back will be comparable to what you would have paid if you went to an independently owned school.

Company-sponsored training can be an excellent way to get your career underway if you can't afford the tuition up front for private schooling.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Old School's Comment
member avatar

Studpuppy, I'm still curious, you keep referring to a fleet manager , so are you at a company sponsored training program? You said the person in charge of the whole training program still wants you to be there, but you also make it sound like there are no trucks available for you to train in - I'm just not getting it! If the person in charge wants you there why can't you be there? What kind of truck driving program doesn't have trucks for you to train in? I'm really not dense, but you're not giving me much to go on. I genuinely want to help you, but can't make sense out of the situation based on the information you're giving us.

But I'm going to stress again that you've got to have that training certificate. You're going to be up a creek without a paddle if you can't get that certificate.

I'm strictly going on assumption here, but if this is a company sponsored program I recommend that you get them to make you an appointment for your test. I think you can pass that test with ease based on the driving experiences you've told us about. If you've got your CDL then they will put you to work and you can move forward and get this behind you. Nobody feels they are fully prepared when they go test out and the people at the DMV know that they are dealing with people who are just barely getting started. They aren't looking for perfection, they are simply looking to see if you know how to be safe and have a little confidence in what you are doing. If you've been driving in the North East for two months you've got way more skills than you need to pass that test.

Don't let that parallel park thing hold you back. Unless you're testing in Texas you may not even have to do that procedure, but if you do here's some advice. It's not that hard to do, and the main thing is that you don't bump the curb with a tire. Even if you're truck is six feet away from the curb when you finish the maneuver it only counts off your score about 4 points. It's not a pass or fail issue unless you bump the curb. All you've got to do is get the trailer backing up and heading in the right direction (idle speed only) toward the curb, then straighten up the cab with your trailer so that you can take a peek in the mirror at the tandems and the curb so you've got an idea how you're coming, then you turn the wheel again to adjust based on what you saw in the mirror, then you will straighten up again and look in that mirror to see how it's coming, then you can turn the other way to get your cab and trailer lined up with each other somewhat parallel with the curb. Trust me, you can do it real sloppy and they will only take off a few points. You can also get out and look (G.O.A.L.) and you are also allowed three pull ups in Texas. You will hardly ever be needing to parallel park in the real world, but the reason a few states have it on their test is just to give the tester an idea about your understanding of how the trailer reacts in a backing situation, and I think you've got more than enough of that based on what you've told us.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

Tandems:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

Tandem:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

Fleet Manager:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

DMV:

Department of Motor Vehicles, Bureau of Motor Vehicles

The state agency that handles everything related to your driver's licences, including testing, issuance, transfers, and revocation.

Company Sponsored Training:

A Company-Sponsored Training Program is a school that is owned and operated by a trucking company.

The schooling often requires little or no money up front. Instead of paying up-front tuition you will sign an agreement to work for the company for a specified amount of time after graduation, usually around a year, at a slightly lower rate of pay in order to pay for the training.

If you choose to quit working for the company before your year is up, they will normally require you to pay back a prorated amount of money for the schooling. The amount you pay back will be comparable to what you would have paid if you went to an independently owned school.

Company-sponsored training can be an excellent way to get your career underway if you can't afford the tuition up front for private schooling.

Joe S. (a.k.a. The Blue 's Comment
member avatar

I am like the rest. I don't get the full picture yet. I can't figure out if it was a company sponsored school or a private school.

If it was company sponsored, then the teacher/trainer should be working for the school, not driving for himself.

I hope I am wrong, but it sounds like one of these school rip offs. We had one here in West Virginia a few years ago. They would hire local truckers to take their students out on the road for some "training" and practice when they had a little slow time.

Then when it came time to graduate, the students didn't have the required hours or required training to get hired by any company. As a matter of fact, when investigated, from what I was told and read in the papers, the school didn't have one single successful hired driver in all of their classes. The school didn't meet the minimum requirement even.

But, while it was closed down, they didn't break the law. They never promised a student a job. They never promised them their CDL's. From the stories I read, the only promise they made, is that they would help a student try to get their CDL's.

That was the mistake I went through years ago and I am still paying for it.

I really hope I am wrong on this. And I hope it all works out for you in the end. But from the little I can picture of this story, it doesn't look good.

As Starcar said. You agreed to pay for the schooling. In their opinion, I guess the schooling is done. Even if you don't feel that it is. Therefore, it is he said, he said. And sorry to say, they usually win in these cases.

Keep it safe out there. Joe S

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.
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