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Driver and Traffic Safety Education FAQ

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DTSE 2015 Guidelines (updated 11/2015 )

Question 1: Our program contracts with a commercial driving school for behind-the-wheel instruction. If the commercial driving school that we contract with happens to employ an approved MV-283 card holder, can that individual deliver the classroom instruction portion of our program?

Answer Q1: No. The classroom teacher of any approved DTSE program must be an employee of the school, college, or BOCES. The classroom teacher should coordinate the day to day operations of the class, report to the school, college, or BOCES administrator in charge of the program, and work with the commercial driving school to coordinate the content delivered between the classroom and behind-the-wheel portions of the program.

Question 2: Our program is outfitting our cars with the necessary dual controls which now include something called an "eye check mirror" (a convex mirror which allows the instructor to observe the head and eye movements of the trainee in the mirror). Can someone tell us where to buy one?

Answer Q2: The State Education Department does not direct the field towards suggested products to purchase. Although we do not endorse any vendor's products, a simple internet search on "eye check mirror, driver education" should begin to direct programs as to where they may be able to purchase one. Another avenue to seek advice on where to purchase an eye check mirror may be to write to the New York State Driver and Traffic Safety Education Association. Their Web site is Please note that the DTSE car must have two rear view mirrors: one for the instructor and one for the driver.

In addition to these two rear view mirrors the DTSE car must have an eye check mirror, which is simply an additional mirror angled in such a way that the instructor can see where the student driver is looking without having to take their eyes off the road or the rear view mirror.

License Event Notification Service (LENS)

Question 1:  Are students required to be enrolled in the LENS program? 

Answer Q1:  No, students should not be enrolled in the LENS program.  The LENS program is to be used by administrators to ensure DTSE teachers maintain an acceptable driving record while employed by a school district.

Question 2:  My school district employs bus drivers and as a result is required to be enrolled in 19-A.  Will enrollment in 19-A allow our district to monitor the license record of our driver education teachers? 

Answer Q2:  No.  Employer enrollment in 19-A is for bus drivers only.  A  LENS account must be established to monitor the license record of driver education teachers employed by the school district.

Question 3: What is this (LENS) information to be used for?

Answer Q3: Notifications will allow administrators to monitor the driving records of DTSE teachers.  It is expected that DTSE teachers conduct themselves in a professional and responsible manner.

Question 4: Who is responsible for administration of the LENS program within the school district?

Answer Q4:  The school administrator overseeing the driver education program within the school district will also be responsible for administration of the LENS program. 

Question 5:  What are the steps to enroll in the LENS program?

Answer Q5:  Enrollment in LENS is free of charge for government agencies including public school districts, BOCES and community colleges.

  • Go to the LENS home page on the DMV website.
  • Go to the link for pre-registration on the right hand side of the page.
  • Enter all information on the pre-registration form and submit.
  • The pre-registration process will produce a complete application with instructions that will be sent back to you via e-mail.

General Program Approval Questions

Question 1: How much liability insurance is required for DTSE programs?

Answer Q1: There is no specific requirement outlining the level of insurance coverage needed while conducting an approved NYS-DTSE course; however, when considering the type of use, number of drivers, and number of passengers involved, schools are encouraged to consult their insurance advisor and/or Health, Safety, and Risk Management advisor to assure appropriate coverage to meet their needs.

General Teacher Approval Questions

Question 1: Can I get a MV-283 card even if I'm not a teacher with an accepted secondary certification?

Answer Q1: Yes.  The classes needed and time spent getting the credential would remain the same, but the actual credential would be a "Restricted" MV-283.  This means the Restricted MV-283 cardholder would be able to teach lecture in nonpublic schools or colleges only. 

Filling Out Teacher Approval Forms DE-2 and DE-2A

Question 1:  Where can I get assistance with what is needed/how to fill out the DE-2 form?

Answer Q1: A document to help anyone looking to receive a MV-283 credential is available on the forms page in the left navigation menu.