Driving into a new world of independence

Sruthi Medepalli, Copy Editor

As Lynbrook students hurry to class, they’re greeted by a procession of student drivers rushing to get the best parking spots. As the final class bell rings, a similar herd of students run to their cars to beat after-school traffic, head home and commute to extracurricular activities. Driving is a significant symbol of independence for teenagers, allowing them the freedom to independently travel long distances. However, concerns regarding the price of insurance, time investment required for driving lessons and general purpose of driving in high school often arise among the school community. Lynbrook students have expressed varying opinions on the purpose of driving in high school and whether it’s necessary.


Photo by Sruthi Medepalli
Junior Anirudh Nandakumar describes why he drives.

Junior Anirudh Nandakumar

“My main motivation to drive in high school was to be able to drive anywhere I want without my parents. If I wanted to go somewhere far, I would not need to ask my parents to drive me there, especially since they would drop me off and pick me up hours later. But practicing with my parents was very stressful. Taking any sort of turn was complemented with criticism because it would either be too fast or too slow.”





Photo by Sruthi Medepalli
Sophomore Ava Tse talks about her driving experience.

Sophomore Ava Tse

“Driving has allowed me to be in a lot more control of my life. I don’t need to rely on my parents to get me where I need to be on time. It has also allowed me to participate in more activities on short notice because I don’t have to check to make sure my parents will be able to pick me up if I stay at school to watch a sports game or work on a project.”


Honestly, driving is slightly scary. The first part of driver’s ed was all statistics on how many people die in car-related accidents each year, and it made me worry about how all it would take is one small mistake for me to crash — or for another driver to crash into me — and injure or kill someone. I don’t really enjoy driving, but I like that it gives me freedom to go places.”


Photo by Sruthi Medepalli
Junior Avni Mangla voices some qualms about driving.

Junior Avni Mangla

“I was not as committed to getting my license as my parents were. They pushed me every day to go practice driving, and I would catch up and have conversations with my dad during these drives. I think what made it especially easy for me was that my dad was very calm and accepting of my driving mistakes, giving me room to improve.”

“Even though my initial motivation to drive was gaining independence, I didn’t quite get that. For small things, my parents will occasionally let me drive, but in general, I do not drive even though I have my license. My parents are wary of if the benefits of driving outweigh the risks for a high schooler. Though it sucks, it is an understandable concern that is an overlooked reality of giving a teenager the ability to drive.”