Last year, between 30 December 2016 and the 17 February 2017 we held a consultation on proposals to improve the way that motorcycle training works in Great Britain.
Last December, I explained the proposals, what they might mean to you and your pupils and the road safety benefits they’ll achieve.
Thank you to those of you who took part in the consultation. We received over 2,200 responses and the proposals were strongly supported by the motorcycle industry.
This blog post might be a bit longer than usual, but I wanted to go through each of the proposals, the level of support received for each proposal and explain how we’re going to progress these.
Update the qualification process for motorcycle instructors
We’d like to replace the current compulsory basic training (CBT) and direct access scheme (DAS) instructor assessments with a single assessment. Instructors would then be able to provide training for all categories of motorcycle after passing it.
87% of those who responded to the consultation supported improving the way that instructors qualify to provide motorcycle training.
We’ll be working on this next year, and we’ll update you on how we get on with this.
Update the content and structure of the CBT syllabus
We proposed to update the CBT syllabus, so it’s aligned more closely with the national standard for riding mopeds and motorcycles. Riders will be required to ‘know and understand’ rather than ‘be taught’ the different elements in the CBT syllabus. This reflects a more modern approach to client-centred learning.
85% of those who responded to the consultation agreed we should restructure CBT courses to focus on:
- the importance of equipment and safety clothing
- on-site training
- motorcycling theory
- on-road practical riding skills.
We’ll let you know more about this in next year, and update you on when the changes to the CBT syllabus will be implemented.
Strengthen the quality assurance scheme for motorcycle instructors
We want to introduce mandatory quality assurance checks for all approved motorcycle training courses (this includes CBT, DAS and any future progressive access training courses) – not just CBT. This would give assurance that training is being provided to the required standard.
97% of those who responded to the consultation support increasing the range of checks that DVSA carries out on motorcycle training schools
We’ll let you know more about how these quality assurance checks will work, next year.
Introduce a licence upgrade training course
We proposed to introduce a training option to let riders below the age of 24 ride larger motorcycles by progressive access, without having to take a further practical test.
92% of those who responded to the consultation support introducing a training course that existing riders can take to upgrade their motorcycle licence.
We’ll need to carry out a further consultation to work through the details of how the licence upgrade training course will work. We plan to consult on this in Spring 2018 and will let you know when we announce this.
Restrict learner riders to automatic motorcycles if used for CBT
We think it’s important to restrict riders to the type of motorcycle that they completed CBT with. This will make sure that riders have the skills they need when riding independently.
84% of those who responded to the consultation agreed we should restrict riders who take their CBT course on an automatic motorcycle to only riding automatic bikes.
This is something we’ll need to carry out a further consultation on, to see how this will work. We’ll also need to look into how riders that complete their CBT on an automatic motorcycle, can upgrade their license to manual afterwards.
Revoking CBT certificates
We proposed that CBT certificates should be revoked if the learner rider gets 6 penalty points, during the 2 year validity period of their CBT. This means that they’ll be unable to ride until another CBT course has been successfully completed.
85% support revoking CBT certificates from riders who get 6 penalty points as it would stop learner riders from riding with L plates after getting points for offences including careless or dangerous riding.
This is something we’ll need to carry out a further consultation on, to see how this will work. We’ll need to work with DVLA on this too.
A digital platform for the CBT administrative process
We want to explore options, with DVLA, to move the administration of CBT from its current paper-based system to a digital platform.
89.9% agreed that the CBT administration process should be on a digital platform. Many people considered that it would be easier to check the expiry of their CBT certificate online.
We intend to introduce a digital platform as soon as we can, but this will be dependent on other IT priorities both at DVSA and DVLA. It might be possible to schedule some of the work into IT changes that have already been planned to enhance current DVSA and DVLA systems. I’ll keep you updated with how this work progresses.
Theory test before or as part of CBT
We think it’s really important all learner riders pass a theory and hazard perception test before taking their CBT. It’d make sure new riders have the theoretical knowledge and understanding of the rules of the road before they ride independently.
85% agreed new riders should have to pass a theory test before they take a CBT course, or as part of their course, to help them ride safely on our busy roads.
We will need to consider the full impact of introducing the requirement to take a theory test as part of CBT and we’ll consult further on this in 2018.
Earned recognition for ATBs and instructors
We’d like to develop an earned recognition scheme to recognise those ATBs who provide higher standards and facilities, and whose instructors achieve consistently high-quality standards.
94% supported introducing a system for motorcycle training schools to be given recognition for consistently high standards.
So, over the next year, we’ll develop the criteria for ‘earned recognition’ with the training industry and develop the functionality of the ‘find a moped or motorcycle CBT course’ service on GOV.UK.
Next steps for 2018
So to summarise, over the next year we’re looking to implement:
- an updated qualification process for motorcycle instructors
- an updated CBT syllabus
- a quality assurance scheme for approved training courses
- a digital platform for the CBT administrative process
- earned recognition for ATB’s and instructors
We’ll be consulting further, in Spring 2018, to get your views on:
- a licence upgrade training course
- restricting riders to the type of motorcycle that they completed CBT with
- revoking CBT certificates
- taking a theory test before or as part of CBT
I’m looking forward to implementing these proposals in the next few years, and I’ll keep you updated on how we get on with this.