What Others Are Saying

My son has adhd and I was worried about him passing the class. Denise addressed my concerns and he not only passed the class, but passed the permit test on the first try. He found parts boring, but other parts very interesting. Ultimately he learned alot and corrects me all the time. Very structured and practical. Couldn’t ask for much more.

Desiree V

I wasn’t sure of the process of getting the correct information to take the permit test. Having Northern Lights Driver Education come to the classroom portion at South Ridge help to know how to navigate the process. The Behind the Wheel lessons were fast paced but still allowed for thorough instruction. The texted information for what skills to practice and the process for being successful witih the skills was extremely valuable to help prepare our student driver.


My son was very nervous to drive. After the first lesson he felt more confident which helped during driving hours. He liked being able to stay at home. He passed his permit test the first try and was very confident on the information. Very easy to set up. Will pick you up at home/school and drop you off at home/school.

Carissa H

My son was very nervous when driving. After drivers ed he seemed really calm and feels comfortable behind the wheel. He really enjoyed the classroom portion. Denise took the time to answer questions and explain everything in detail. Throughly enjoyed working with Denise. She is a professional and knowledgeable and wonderful with teens.

Lisa Thomas

I was worried about what my child would be taught… and if he would listen to the instructor. We thought the classroom portion was fine. Denise McDougall is a wonderful instructor. Very detailed, professional, and was a true pleasure to deal with.

Jennifer Slygh

It was very good. We got a lot of really great information. My husband and I even learned a couple things. Both our son and daughter came out of the lesson with more confidence.

Gayle H

I was worried about my child understanding how important it is to pay attention and create a good routine. The classroom portion was very thorough. The Behind the Wheel portion was good.

Heather Hayes

Before Drivers Ed, I was struggling to get my teen to listen and learn about driving safely. He thought he knew everything. Once he went to the classroom he learned quickly he had a lot to learn. He listened to what he was being taught and when practicing driving he woudl always tell me the expectations that Denise had laid out and he always strived to meet that. She did a great job of getting him engaged and was good at giving constructive feedback. My teen said it best, “She was a tough teacher, but I appreciated her pushing us hard, those are my favorite teachers.” My son learned a lot, he taught me a lot that I honestly didn’t know! My son enjoyed his time driving with Denise because he knew if he was being coached on something it was important. Sometimes things like this are better not coming from a parent when they are this age because they are more willing to accept the feedback and act on it quicker. I would recommend Northern Lights Driver Education to others.

Kirsten M.

My son is shy, so I wasn’t sure how he would do. Denise is very friendly, and explained everything that was going to happen before they drove. He was talkative and comfortable with her. We didn’t do the classroom part, but will with our next child. We had great communication, and the class provided much needed knowledge at an easy pace. My son never felt uncomfortable or nervous. I would recommend Northern Lights Driver Education to other parents.

Cheri Brouse

Having a young person already gone through another drivers ed program, I was concerned about the lack of details and information taht would be provided. I was incredibly impressed listening to the class organization, details, thoroughness, and attention (done online at home due to COVID). The instructor payed attention to each kid even though it was online. Each class was explained and the plan was always clear. I was lucky enough to listen alongside my son (as we were online due to COVID) and we learned a lot of things together which was helpful. I appreciate the attention to details. My son learned a lot. He was able to sit through classes and get what he needed. I was surprised manual shift stick was explained thoroughly. It seemed confusing but there were several points brought up that related to driving that wouldn’t have been otherwise covered. Not a bad thing at all. It seems as all the key matters were explained in depth and clearly. I would recommend Northern Lights Drivers Education to others.

Tiffany Brinker

I did not have any concerns, because I had one child complete the course last year. Any concerns I had then had been addressed. My son liked being able to do the classes from home. It was his time to be away from everyone distraction free. I feel like both my boys retained a lot of information. There are many times when they will say,…”Mrs. Denise says…”. I would recommend Northern Lights Driver Education.

Candy Ellestad

I had concerns that my son would not be ready to drive at the age of 16 or that we wouldn’t have enough time to give him the instruction that he needed. Yes Northern lights driver ed did resolve these concerns. Denise would reach out and initiate the scheduling and follow through of a driving lesson, she would also send out informational emails and texts. This was very helpful in the education of our son. The coursework and behind the wheel lessons include a lot of information on safe driving- this is very important to us. We thought the classroom portion was very effective. The behind the wheel portion of class was pivotal in helping Tenzin develop confidence in his driving skills. We feel the classes were convenient and effective.

Tiffany Winchenbach

It was challenging to get on the books, but Northern Lights got us in and we couldn’t be more grateful for the exceptional experience.

Christina Luoma

I was concerned with my daughter getting her hours in. Denise was very accommodating to help get everything done.

Hannah M.

We were concerned with the effiiency of it being all onine due to COVID guidelines but it ended up going great. It worked out very well for us because we were quite a ways away from the classroom location. Jordan enjoyed being able to take the class from the comfort of home. We think the BTW portion went smoothly.

Kate Roth

I had concerns with the class being online, which was resolved this by being available for questions and the online class was very well paced and good. My son learned a lot.

Tonya S.

I was unsure about teaching my child to execute specific driving tasks. You eliminated this concern by teaching skills she was able to remember and perform. My child thougth it was a very good experience. She felt comfortable and safe with you. She also felt she was learning skills I couldn’t verbalize directions for an teach her. She was able to pass her behind the wheel exam without difficulty and felt confident because your expert guidance.

Julie Penzenik

The classroom portion was on the computer and went well. My child thought everything was fine with the behind the wheel portion. I was pleased with everything and would recommend Northern Lights Drivers Ed.

Peggy Radosevich

Andrew had very little experience prior to taking Denise’s class. Denise did a great job of teaching him how to drive responsibly and lawfully. We liked that it was virtual because it fit our busy schedule. The curriculum was thoughful and thorough.

Jessica Johnson

Northern Lights answered all question I had a prior to enrolling. My student enjoyed classes. I really liked the specific instructions for what skills we should prior to the next driving lesson. The curriculum was covered really well.

Terri P

I didn’t have any concerns before the class, other than the usual nervousness of your kid driving. My child thought the class was easy to follow along and easy to learn. I think everything was covered in depth perfectly. I would recommend Northern Lights to others.


My behind the wheel experience with my son was with another company, and pretty much seemed like a total waste of money. I had a much better feeling about Northern Lights. Denise was a good teacher, kept me informed, and had clear expectations for my daughter and for me. Maggie always came back from her lesson feeling encouraged and excited. She learned a lot, and it really boosted her confidence.

Valerie R.

I was concerned about my child developing comfort behind the wheel, navigating the process of logging hours, and scheduling lessons. My daughter had a lot of anxiety about driving and Denise was very instructive, providing instruction in a safe and comfortable manner. Her confidence increased substantially after each lesson.


I was concerned about finding an instructor my son was comfortable driving with. Behind the Wheel when quite smoothly. Wonderful instructor. Very helpful. Cares how student progresses with driving skill. Great experience. I think everything was fine how it was, if any questions were asked, they were answered. Each lesson was a wonderful experience.

Glenda Peterson

My daughter learned a lot about driving that she never knew. She found the behind-the-wheel very helpful. There is no doubt that the behind the wheel experience made my daughter a much safer driver.

Craig S.

My daughter thought the class was very informative. She needs to have repetition to really get it, and she got just that. The teacher made sure the kids understood what she was saying. My daughter was super nervous before she did the class. When I went to pick her up from behind the wheel she said it was great! She felt so comfortable and not nervous. She feels ready to take her test.

Carol Golen

I was concerned about my child’s confidence behind the wheel. Denise really made my child feel comfortable. I appreciate her patience working with my child. Now my child enjoys driving. I am impressed with my child’s ability and knowledge of the rules of the road. I appreciate that Denise suggested specific practice to sharpen skills between lessons.

Patrick O

With our older son we had a terrible experience with a different drivers ed program. When Eli was ready, we went off a recommendation from a friend to try Northern Lights.  I am so happy we did! The whole process was super easy from registration to completion.

Eli thought it was worked great, even remotely due to Covid and having to be online. There weren’t any connection issues and Eli was able to follow along quite easily.
Denise was fantastic with getting Eli scheduled and on the road.  Eli really enjoyed the whole process.

Kim S.

I was hoping for good communication about the schedule, make-up dates, and ensuring requirements were met for each stage. Denise was always prompt, helpful, and professional in all communication, and informed parents about everything pertinent to their student’s education.
My daughter learned an immense amount of information, and found the classroom content to be presented in an interesting and informative manner, with plenty of examples and illustrations to help remember the class content. She received a very thorough driver’s education from Denise.

My daughter was very happy with behind the wheel. She learned so much, felt comfortable with Denise, and always came home feeling confident and positive about her performance. We knew she was in good hands from the very beginning; it was clear that Denise cares deeply about her students having an adept grasp on everything they need to know to drive safely. We’ve had three kids go through driver’s training, and this one by far was the best. It far exceeded our expectations.
We give Northern Lights Driver Education 5-stars!

Brenna J

We were concerned about whether or not this experience would prepare our chidl for the driving test and Denise went above and beyond to make sure it did. Our child participated in the Behind-the-Wheel training , there was excellent instruction and great follow up. I would recommend Northern Lights Driver Education to others.

Jessica T.

Before class started I was concerned that my daughter had picked up bad habits from watching me and her sisters. She had, we discussed it, and Denise helped her correct it. The classroom portion was much needed before started out on becoming a responsible driver. My child would like even more hours with the driving instructor.
I think that being responsible behind the wheel and making good choices can’t be stressed enough. Education on the consequences of choices we make more in-depth would maybe help to become a good responsible driver. We would recommend Northern Lights Driver Education!

Judy Aho

I have had 2 children go through this program. At first, I was unsure of how the training process was. After talking with other parents I was nervous about my child not getting what she needed. Both of my girls were sufficiently given the instruction to use their common sense through this program. I had both in-person and virtual experiences with this class with my girls. The in-person had a book for them to follow. I wish the virtual class would have had one too. It would have made things a little easier for my second child to follow. My girls were certainly nervous about behind the wheel. They were afraid of disappointing the instructor and not getting things correct. Having feedback from the instructor helped me ease their feelings.


I was really nervious about my son starting, but it was a great experience. He liked that it was over zoom. He said the behind-the-wheel was fun. He learned new things and Denise made it fun. I would recommened Northern Lights Driver Education

Nicole L.

My daughter can have some major anxiety about things and she was very nervous and struggled with not wanting to set up the next sessions because she didn’t feel ready. She came out in good spirits after her classes, not issues and was excited to be taking the class. She ws nervous before each behind the wheel and needed reassurance beforehand to feel more confident. I would recommend Northern Lights Driver Education.

Crystal M

My daughter thought the classroom portion was good. It was online due to COVID. She learned a lot and was surprised at how much she didn’t know about driving. She said “Denise was good at explaining things as I did them and that was helpful.”

Karla Fagerland

I was worried how much he was going to learn because were in the beginning of the COVID pandemic. Because we were in the pandemic, the classes were done via Zoom. I was SO impressed with the fact that Denise was able to thave that many kids in class and she kept them all involved and would call on kids to answer questions. She did a great job even if they got it wrong explaining the difference. My son was pretty nervous. He would alsways come back with homework and things to work on and practice before the next behind-the-wheel class. It was great knowing what to work on. Denise did an amazing job and couldn’t have asked for a better experience. I was very happy with all that was covered, especially peer pressure during driving, drinking and diving, texting, and othe distractions during driving.

Sherri L.

I was concerned about a Wisconsin student having class in Minnesota, but you taught what he needed to know. He loved it and learned so much. He was always talking about what he learned and correcting my driving.

Donna Jones

Our questions were always answered, and Denise was very kind and accommodating. My daughter took the Behind-the-Wheel course and loved it. She always came home with information and the proper techniques of how to turn, stop, and other aspects of driving to help her feel more confident when she drove with me to prepare for her license. We would recommend Northern Lights Driver Education to others.

Mandy Fagan

The classes whent fairly smoothly, convenient times. Helpful that instructor met us at our home for behind the wheel, start and finish.

Marcia R

I was concerned about finding a session with days that would work around my daughter’s schedule. Denise was very accommodating. My daugther liked the candy. It helped keep her attention. Great job of explaining rules and regulations.

Ashley Herrboldt

My son is on the spectrum so has a harder time retaining information and wasn’t sure he woudl be able to grasp the rules of the road. Denise was patient and understanding with him and he was comfortable so was able to learn everything. I think it was very informative and even I learned a few new rules that had changed since I had taken drivers ed.

Amie Lawrey

Our concerns were whether drivers ed classes would with an athlete’s schedule, how we’d get him there if we were still at work. Northern Lights ended up working out perfectly for us in every situation. Flexible and weekends. He thought it helped him quite a bit to pass the permit test. He thought Denise was very informative and patient.

Erin Postal

I had concerns about how my son would even complete his Behind the Wheel instruction due to his busy school and sports schedule.  Northern Lights Driver Ed was extremely flexible with the session and times.  My son Garrett had a great experience taking the Behind the Wheel sessions with Denise.  He felt much more confident as a driver and was well prepared not only for this driver’s test, but for navigting in a variety of different driving situations.  Denise has a calm demeanor and gave a lot of valuable instruction.  Garrett felt comfortable asking questions and learned a lot.  I would easily give Northern Lights Driver’s Ed a 5 start rating and recommend them to others. 

– Amy Johnson

My son took classes through a different provider, but he felt he learned more in his first driving session with Northern Lights Driver Education than he did in all the classes.  It was good to see him drive after the first time with Denise.  As with most teens, he was reluctant to take “Mom’s advice” on driving technique, but after his first behind-the-wheel session he was confidently pointing out some of the things I was initially concerned about and what Denise had taught him.  He enjoyed his time in BTW training and became a better driver.  I’m very glad he waited to take his training with you.  Thank you, and keep putting out good, safe drivers!

– M. L.

I had several concerns when starting the driver education process – would my child be safe, what would the price be, would the instructor be thorough in teaching what is needed. NLDE was a great program for our child and we got to personally know the instructor. While my child didn’t like answering questions in front of peers, the class itself was very informative and was given in a way that our child maintained the info. Our child like the behind the wheel portion of the class and it is definitly a must when learning to drive. She learned a lot about driving and the curriculum was perfectly age based. We would recommend Northern Lights Driver Education to others.


Great experience! Ms. McDougall was flexible and would meet us where convenient for us, was very kind, knowledgeable, reliable, and had great communication skills and informed us of things our child should work on. She responded to texts for last minute questions before taking the test! She went above and beyond expectations.


My child did the behind-the-wheel portion with Northland Lights Driver Education. It was very thorough and professional. My son learned a great deal. I appreciated the time Denise took after each two hour session to discuss driving for that day. She was positive and encouraging for a young driver. I would recommend her to others.

Krista Nosan

As a single parent, working multiple jobs, I was worried about how I was going to be able to get my son to driver’s education classes downtown…I was thrilled that Northern Lights had such a convenient location right here in Proctor. It couldn’t have been any nicer! Furthermore the classroom facility was clean, climate controlled, and in a safe, family friendly location.My son throughly enjoyed the classroom portion of the class. It was paced at a level that kept him on his toes, but was not overwhelming nor too slow and boring. He made more then one comment about Denise…”Denise said this and Denise told us that… Denise really cares if we know this stuff…Denise really wants us to be safe, like the stuff she has to show us is suppose to scare us, but you can tell she really just wants us to realize how bad we could get hurt or hurt someone else… driving is a huge responsibility…”
Greg really enjoyed BTW… he was bummed if Denise had to brake for him…😛 He said, “Denise has A LOT more patience than you do mom…” Nevermind I told him some of the EXACT same things Denise did…If it came from her— it was the word of God…

Heidi Owens

Our biggest concern was trying to fit the behind-the-wheel in around work and school. It wasn’t an issue. My son liked it and learned a lot. I would recommend Northern Lights Driver Education.

Mike A.

I was afraid of driving because of the traffic and all the regulations. Northern Lights Driver Education helped me to resolve that by helping me get used to the roads and regulations. The class was very helpful. I would recommend it to others.


My concern was that my child come out of the process feeling confident in the skills he learned.  Northern Lights Driver Ed did a wonderful job making sure my son was knowledgeable and confortable with the rules of driving. My son thought the classroom portion at times was boring but understood it was necessary. Denise was absolutely wonderful at teaching the behind the wheel.  Denise teaches and encourages and gives feedback on their skills.  I would like to see more behind-the-wheel hours. 
– Kathleen Piper

We were worried about how we’d complete the class after COVID started, Denise was great making the zoom classes work for everyone. She enjoyed the interaction, but it was a little harder online than in person. We would have liked more time practicing parallel parking, but had great feedback. I would recommend Northern Lights Driver Education.
– Anonymous

We were concerned by COVID delays. Denise was able to work with us and get my son ready for the driving test with a safe, responsible, and personalized approach. He enjoyed it and learned a lot!

Kai B.

My daughter only participated in Behind-the-Wheel lessons. She really enjoyed Denise’s explanations for proper handling of a vehicle from parallel parking to entering a freeway. She valued all the driving information and advice Denise offered. As a parent, it was evident that my daughter wasn’t merely receiving lessons, but being taught how to evaluate all sorts of driving situations. Denise is a superb instructor!

Shelley R

Taught good habits and awareness, very good instructions and memorable interactions. Classroom was all online and had a good use of time and visuals.  We felt the instruction was complete.

Siiri Morse

We found the class educations and appreciated the instruction. We would recommend Northern Lights Driver’s Education.