Labour promises free driving lessons for high school students

Labour is promising funding for all secondary students to be taught to drive, budget, and understand the political system to help them transition into work and the community.

Leader Jacinda Ardern announced the policy on Monday morning, which the party calls a "school leavers' toolkit".

"Having a driving licence so you can get to work, knowing how to fit into a workplace, knowing how to manage your money, and knowing how to take your place in the community - these are all important skills in adult life, and we need to do more to ensure our young people are equipped with them," Ms Ardern said.

Key points from Labour's new policy:

  • All secondary students would be offered five hours of free driving lessons, a defensive driving course, and free testing for their restricted and full licenses before they leave school
  • The party is taking aim at the decline in voting among young people, and will teach civics education in all high schools
  • Courses on budgeting and financial literacy would be available in all high schools
  • Every high school will have careers advisors

Ms Ardern said the policy was developed after its Future of Work Commission found that secondary students needed to be better equipped when they left school.  

"Labour's School Leavers' Toolkit will help students learn to drive, understand practical budgeting, be equipped with workplace skills, and learn how our political system operates through civics education at school," she said.  

The policy will be funded as part of the $4 billion Labour has committed for the education sector.