ELK GROVE VILLAGE (CBS) — For many teenagers, there’s nothing more exciting than getting their driver’s license, but almost 200 people are now in a tailspin after a northwest suburban driving school suddenly shut its doors.
The school, located in an Elk Grove Village strip mall, was in business for more than a decade.
Students aren’t only out money. They’re stuck trying to figure out how to finish driving classes they’d already started.
Lindsey Huerta, 16, was weeks away from getting her driver’s license. She was set to get behind the wheel again with A Plus Driving School owner Leslie Marshall on July 31 – after shelling out about $500 for the class last fall.
But her plan has hit the brakes.
“It’s not gonna happen anymore because of this, unfortunately,” said Huerta.
Outside the school’s office, is a note on the door from another driving school stating it wants to help drivers complete their course.
“Oh, I’m mad, I’m really mad,” said Beyonce Seals. “I’m still mad, but I have calmed down a little bit.”
Seals is another student out hundreds of dollars just shy of finishing the class.
“That’s what I’m thinking right now that she took everyone’s money,” Seals said.
Seals says she last texted with Marshall July 13, when Marshall canceled their driving appointment. Days later, the business shuttered.
Marshall was not reachable for comment, at the office or at her home. Students say they now have to shell out even more money to finish somewhere else.
“I’m gonna have to pay almost $700 for this when other people paid about $500,” said Huerta.
An Illinois Secretary Of State official says A+ Plus Driving School was licensed but abruptly closed last week, impacting about 180 people.
Students can call the Secretary of State’s Commercial Driver section at 847-981-7455 for help with credit transfers and possible reimbursement. But that could take months.
Students put the blame on Marshall.
“I think she she should some out from wherever she went. She should give a formal apology to all the students and parents. That’s what she should have done in the first place,” said Seals.