They are protesting due to changes outlined in the Macron law, currently being discussed in the French Parliament. The aim of the changes is to reduce waiting times for passing the driving test to 45 days against two months which is the average today.
They will allow both police officers and postal workers to be allowed to conduct the practical side of the test. The economy minister is also seeking to abolish the compulsory minimum threshold of twenty hours of classes before submission to the test.
Of course the driving schools are not happy with this as they state that it takes the necessary time to teach young drivers the behavior of a future motorist.
This of course in my opinion, is just a way to secure a very large amount of money that they currently receive from new drivers eager to pass the test. I took my test years ago in the United Kingdom, when there wasn’t a theory test and just the practical driving test.
You were under no obligation to take lessons with a driving school, and if I remember correctly, my Dad taught me the basics for a couple of hours before going to the driving school to have about 11 lessons before my test date arrived.
I know that when my daughter took it here in France, she first had to go to a classroom each week through the driving school, to learn the theory, and only after a lot of weeks when they determined she would pass, would they enter her for the test.
The same happened with the driving lessons, and instead of applying for a date early on, so you have something to aim towards, she had to do endless lessons before they thought she was ready to be entered.
Now from what I understand, I have read somewhere that you can shortcut the first part and enter yourself for the theory, but for the practical test, you have no choice but resort to the driving school. This, in my opinion is just crazy and I would be in favor of changing this, making it easier for people to take the driving test.
Negotiations with the government at set to continue on Tuesday, so we will have to see what happens.