CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD)- A local mom is spreading awareness on the importance of teaching teens and young adults safe driving skills.
MaryChris Delcioppo’s son is a senior at Wando High School. Two years ago, she received a phone call that started her mission.
“There was a phone call to the parents about a students that died in a traffic accident on his way to school,” says Delcioppo. “I didn’t know the student, but that phone call broke me. I was at work and I sat at my desk and cried.”
As the community grieved, she noticed that many parents on social media saying that they wanted more police on campus and more punishment for bad driving.
“In my heart I knew that wasn’t going to change behaviors,” she says.
Her mission began searching for a way to educate high school students in the community in a positive way. She heard about the Alive at 25 course from her sister and decided to give it a try.
“If I’m going to promote something, I need to know about it. You know? I’m not just going to go off of hearsay,” she says.
The Alive at 25 is a program by the National Safety Council designed to teach teens smart driving techniques beyond the standard driving course.
Delcioppo and her son drove to Columbia where they both took the 4 hour class. There she learned that students in Lexington County are required to take the course to get a parking pass on campus.
“People aren’t voluntarily going to do it. Even though it’s just 4 hours and $40 and can make a difference in your life- people just aren’t going to do it. When you tie it to something they will,” she says.
After speaking with Wando High School officials, the Alive at 25 course will now be offered on Saturdays in two locations: Wando High School and the Mount Pleasant Police Department.
Starting in 2020, Wando High School students will be required to take the Alive at 25 course in order to get a parking pass.
Delcioppo says that the National Safety Council has even added an online feature that allows parents to sponsor other children who can’t afford to take the course.
Moving forward, she hopes that more schools in the district and in the state will follow suit. For more information on Alive at 25 or to sign up, click here.