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Price Shopping

If you were buying a Sony T.V. price shopping is a good idea, since this product would be the same no matter where you bought it.

If you were learning to fly and one instructor charged $75 per hour and another charged $55 per hour what would be the difference? After all both instructors are probably licensed, and know how to fly a plane. Since knowing how to fly a plane skillfully, and knowing what to do for different emergencies is so important, you would want to get the best instructor. You would want a teacher that is skillful and knowledgeable at his craft, someone who is patient and actually knows how to impart knowledge.

I’ve been a driving teacher for over 44 years. I’ve had lots of experience teaching all kinds of students from the very new to those older drivers just seeking a brush up course. I’ve worked with developmentally and physically disabled drivers and can teach just about anybody who is willing and able to learn. I can teach more than just basic skills. Given the time I can teach them how to anticipate and avoid car crashes better than many experienced drivers. We’ve all hear the expression, “Experience is the best teacher.” Well I have modified that expression to “Experience CAN be the best teacher”, once you have a good grasp on fundamentals. For example, is a woman who has 12 children a better mother than one who has only 2? After all she has much more experience than the mother with only two children.

Many of my Senior Drivers have been driving longer than I have been alive, does this in itself mean they are better drivers because of their experience? It all comes back to basic fundamental knowledge and motivation. If you have good understanding of the basic skills, and if you are motivated to do the best job, then experience certainly will produce a great mother, or a great driver for that matter. To learn the fundamental skills well you need a good role model and a good teacher.

Were all of your teachers in High School really excellent and an inspiration to you? Remember, they were all licensed by the State. If high school teachers were paid according to their ability to teach and inspire then the best teachers would command the best rates of pay. Usually their rate of pay is determined by tenure, length of time as a teacher.

In the private driving school business, we pay our instructors based on their ability to teach. The really great teachers get a lot of word of mouth referrals, have no complaints, and command up to $35 per hour. Most driving teachers in the State have been teaching less than a year. They earn $11 to $15 per hour if they are lucky. If you are not doing the job right, it can be stressful and dangerous. If you are going through the motions and doing the bare minimum you can easily BURN OUT! So they quit or go to a school willing to pay them more.

We are always looking for good teachers. We have an excellent reputation and aim to keep it that way. We endeavor to hire experienced teachers, and retrain them in our methods of instruction, so that they will enjoy the art of driver training, and pass on maximum information in minimum amount of time. We look for people of good character, who are trustworthy and take pride in doing a job well, not just going through the motions. If we hire a new teacher, we pick them for their teaching aptitude, patience and ability to drive a car well and communicate clearly without tension or anxiety. The State requires a minimum of 60 hours of training. We go beyond that, by continuously upgrading and training even our experienced teachers with seminars, workshops and in car training with the owner, Ken Cornelius, who has worked for three of the largest schools in California, before opening his own in 1974. We care about what we do, and we want to put the best drivers on the road. Your new driver will pass the California Road Test, no matter who teaches them. But will they know how to detect and handle even simple emergencies? Some schools of thought call this Defensive Driving. We call it Conscious Driving, where we learn to anticipate and detect potential problems or hazards. For the skill of driving you should want the very best. If they learn the skill correctly in the beginning they will be inspired to improve upon their skills and get better and better with more experience...and then Experience can be the best teacher.

The schools that charge the lowest prices get many customers because the lower rates are attractive. Because they have lot’s of customers, they are usually booked up way in advance. We charge top dollar and we are also booked up weeks and sometimes months in advance. We can do this because we get a lot of word of mouth referrals and many of our students take more than the minimum six hour requirement because they want to learn more...that’s inspiration!

The owner of our company gets between $100 and $125 per hour because of his advanced abilities and the demand. Our regular rate is $75 per hour. We also offer scholarships, sometimes full and mostly partial, depending on the circumstances. So if money is scarce, you can apply for a scholarship just by sending us a note, in your own handwriting and giving us the reasons why you can’t afford to pay full price. Your application will be kept in strict confidence.

A final word of advice even if you don’t choose our school. To get the best instructor from any school, tell them you are looking for the best teacher and that you are comparing schools. “Please send your best or I might switch to another school!”

And if you begin with another school and don’t like the teacher, you can finish your hours with us, just by showing us your receipt from the other school, so don’t be afraid to switch if you are not happy with the service.

Driving is a potentially dangerous skill that you will be using everyday for the rest of your life, so learn to do it well right from the beginning and we will help you to be your best!!


"They taught me to drive like a champ!"
-Tobias Tune

"Thanks to Sunshine Driving School I aced my drivers test on the first try...with compliments from the examiner for avoiding and accident with remarkable reflexes!"
-Akka B, Poet

Oakland "This man taught me to drive when I first came to this country. Triple AAA+++, thank you Ken, for all your safe driving tips and your patience with me. Now I love to drive!"
-Indu Kline

"Ken is a great teacher. I was only 26 years old when I took his program. I had just come from New York and had never needed a car. Ken's instruction insured that I became a safe and happy driver! Thanks Ken!"
-Marilyn Mosley-Goranier: Educator, Ojai

"Ken taught me to drive in a month and a half at age 32. He also taught both of my children to drive. My daughter went on to drive buses while attending U.C. Santa Cruz. He is the best!"
-Jessica Watling-Murray

If you want to learn to drive this is the place to call! The skills you will gain will last a l lifetime. I have proof!
-Asha Tyska McLaughlin

"My daughter was 21 and was too scared to learn to drive. Sunshine Driving School was the only place where she felt safe enough to learn. Now she's a confident and safe driver. Thank you!"
-Debbie Godfrey, self employed

Ken and Sunshine Driving School were the best things that could have happened to me during learning to drive experience. After a horrible set of lessons from another local driving school, after which I vowed I would never drive again, Ken reestablished my confidence in my driving abilities. His calm demeanor assured me that I was always safe, and his encouragement (and occasional humor) helped me learn in a positive and constructive way. Folks, Ken is undoubtedly one of the best driving teachers out there. His experience shows in every lesson and interaction. It was a pleasure and honor to learn how to drive from Ken, especially after encountering the worst. Heck, I even passed my test first try!

I hope that this suffices! I could probably write you an in-depth 5 page paper if you really wanted it. I'm thinking a catchy title would be: KEN CORNELIUS, PRAISE BE UNTO HIM! :) hahaha.

I hope that you and all of your family is doing well. I recommend you to EVERYONE! Truly!

Best wishes always,
Olivia, Thacher Student

Contact Us

Sunshine Driving School
229 East Villanova Rd. Ojai, CA 93023

Tel: (8O5) 646-2113
Fax: (805) 646-6184


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