(Just so you don't have to read this whole thing, the answer is YES)
Alright, let's get to the bottom of the burning question currently surrounding ABATE's Motorcycle Safety Division, "Can I get my license by taking the ABATE course?". The simple answer is, "Yes, you can obtain your motorcycle endorsement through an ABATE class." If that is really all that someone wants to know, we can simply leave it at that. However, if you want the details of the story (perhaps to clarify your understanding or dispel rumors that you've heard) feel free to read on.
There have been numerous changes and challenges in the state rider education program over the last few years. The complete history was pretty well explained in “Hoosier Motorcyclist” a couple times over the past year. We have continued in our efforts to resolve some issues and are encouraged by the openness of the new Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV) Commissioner, Peter Lacy.
Although we continue to work with the BMV as they develop criteria for the approval of rider education curricula, the Basic Rider Skills (BRS) course that ABATE is utilizing for the 2017 season is not currently recognized by the BMV.
Despite rumors to the contrary, ABATE of Indiana does in fact have a contract with the state (BMV). This contract is for motorcycle licensing. At the conclusion of the ABATE course, students will use a training motorcycle (owned by ABATE) to take the Rider Skill Test (RST). This is why it is necessary to have a valid motorcycle learner's permit from the BMV prior to taking the ABATE course. In a number of states it has always been necessary to possess a permit prior to obtaining an endorsement and this changed only recently in Indiana. The components of the end of course evaluation and the license examination are virtually identical. There is no additional cost for the test to the student.
Upon successful completion of the RST (after the ABATE course is completed), a student's permit will be stamped. The stamped permit is then taken to the branch (just like a waiver) to have the motorcycle endorsement (L) added to their license.
We will continue to work toward making this less confusing, but the ultimate answer is that, as long as you meet the requirements, you'll leave the class with everything you need to go the license branch and get your endorsement (not really any different than it's been for about 30 years).
ABATE of Indiana is very excited about the BRS and the caliber of rider that it produces. We look forward to continuing to provide the highest quality of rider education to Hoosier riders, just as we have to more than 130,000 over the past 38 years.
ABATE of Indiana