Driving school closes unexpectedly

By on October 30, 2009

Students must complete instruction somewhere else
by Martha Quetsch
ELBURN—When Fox Valley Driving School closed unexpectedly earlier this month, the parents of some students whose classes were suspended wondered where to turn.

“I don’t know what we’re going to do,” said one parent, Ilene. She asked to keep her last name private to protect her child’s privacy.
[quote] Ilene paid more than $300 early this year for her daughter to take the driving program at the school. The student finished the classroom portion last spring, and expected to take behind-the-wheel instruction this fall. When she went online to register recently, the facility’s website contained an announcement that the school had closed because of the owner’s medical condition and financial constraints.

“We didn’t receive any notification,” the parent said.

She called the school and heard a message stating that the facility closed in early October and that the Secretary of State would transfer students to another driving school to complete their instruction. However, when the parent called the Secretary of State driver’s license facility in Elgin, she was told that was not true, she said.

Carol Denofrio, of Green Light Driving School, 135 S. Main St., Elburn, said that students must find another school at which to complete the driving program. However, before they can sign up, they need to provide verification from the Secretary of State of the instructional hours they already have completed, Denofrio said.

Denofrio has received several calls from local residents who were students at Fox Valley Driving School asking if and how they could complete their instruction at Green Light.

Those who want to finish their driver’s program at Green Light may inquire at the school about how to obtain the Secretary of State verification of completed hours, Denofrio said.

“We would be happy to take care of these students in finishing their driving program,” Denofrio said.

Fox Valley Driving School owner Rob Swartz did not respond to inquiries from the Elburn Herald about the school’s closure. Swartz opened the business in May 2008.

Since Swartz is no longer renting the building at 130 Gates St. that formerly housed his driving school, its owner put the structure up for sale or lease, said Realtor John Hoshaw of Coldwell Banker in St. Charles.

Photo: The former location of the now-defunct Fox Valley Driving School is up for sale or lease. Photo by Martha Quetsch