It is an undisputed fact that no one in the entire State of Kansas knows more about Drivers Education than our School Director Joan Peterson. With her experience of personally teaching over 5,300 teens to drive, then spending 20 years as the Drivers Education Consultant for the entire State of Kansas, and with a Masters Degree in Curriculum and Instruction from K-State, Joan brings an unparalleled level of knowledge and insight to Johnny Rowlands Driving Schools.
Her philosophy that truly caring for the students, as well as being ultra-responsive, should be the cornerstone of our operation, has resonated with both students and parents alike. It is her commitment to doing everything she can to ensure students complete our course successfully that has allowed us to quickly become the leading Driving School in Johnson County.
Joan first began as a Driver Education Teacher for Manhattan High School in 1979, a position she held for almost 20 years. In 1998 she was appointed as The Drivers Ed Consultant with the Kansas Department of Education, overseeing the statewide motorcycle, commercial, and public Driver Education schools, and for the next 20 years she was responsible for ensuring school compliance, improvement, and accreditation. While in that position, Joan also served as the person who trained other instructors via online courses at both Johnson County Community College and Emporia State University, She was also a DIP AAA Instructor at Johnson County Community College from 2012-2017.
When Joan announced she was retiring as the Drivers Ed Consultant for the State at the end of May, 2018, Johnny Rowlands wasted no time in reaching out to recruit her as School Director, and she jumped at the chance. "Not only was I thrilled at the prospect of continuing to protect and serve Kansas teens in becoming responsible, courteous, and safe drivers, but having pretty much seen it all, I was also impressed that Johnny realized how critical it was to make sure the student/parent experience was over-the-top positive", she said. "With Driver Education my passion for the past 42 years, and during that time evaluating hundreds of school operations, I knew that in this business it is paramount to have excellent customer service, and that's exactly what Johnny was looking for. I pride myself on being able to offer that service at the highest level for our School".
Johnny Rowlands knew that having someone with Joan's unmatched credentials could make a huge difference in the quality of the entire operation. "Although all of Joan's experience with teaching and consulting the State was invaluable, it was her knowledge of what separated the good schools from the bad schools that was the most important to me", he explained. "With decades of fielding calls from parents who had had bad experiences, she knew exactly how a school should operate, and especially how a school should interact with regards to the all important student/parent relationship."
But that's not all she brought to the table. "Joan is one of that rare breed who can be very professional and at the same time have a lot of fun. Her personality fit perfectly with mine, and with how I wanted the school to be perceived, which was to acknowledge the importance of what we do, but do it without taking an authoritative and punitive approach with the students," he said. "Joan sets the tone for all of the Classroom and Driving Instructors, and from top to bottom students will always know we are on their side".
Joan's expertise is in helping students and parents sort through all the requirements of the very complex Kansas Graduated Drivers License, and she is especially good at being creative and resourceful when it comes to solving any problems they may have. Joan is the only person you will talk to when you call us, and rest assured when you do, she will never try to sell you on our school or even Drivers Ed if your teen doesn't need it. In keeping with the School philosophy, Joan is there to help, whether your student ends up attending our school or not, and is a true expert and professional who will give you the best information possible.
On a personal note, in typical Joan style, she wanted to be sure to let you know she is single, and likes to take long walks on the beach.