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Re: [school-discuss] Re: [IIEP] Retraining initiative

On 5/11/05, Tom Adelstein <tadelste@xxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> We have a big pool of IT talent unemployed and we see headlines that
> students do not want to go into tech careers in college. So, we need
> "retraining" or "skill enhancement" or something.

That is a fact - technologies change evolutionary all the time and
businesses (and, therefore people that work there) must adapt to
continuosely changing technology to continue innovating and providing
best service thus retaining the market share. People that stay behind
the evolution, risk being left in the cold.
Sometimes technology changes in leaps - revolutionary when the next
best thing comes around and the concurent using that next best thing
can provide better service then you. This is not predictable until it
happens (except few visionaries that can try to predict a success and
try to make it happen getting to the top of the way in the process)
and it tends to leave a lot of people in the cold at once.
For all those people retraining and skill enhancement is and always
will be needed.
> I'm just throwing an idea around. What's wrong with curriculum that will
> focus on the hot IT topics to help people find jobs now and then
> curriculum growing as the landscape changes?

The curriculum must teach a pupil two things:
* the basics of everything - facts that do not change
* how and where to learn more

If curriculum focuses on a hot topic it will become useless when the
topic suddenly cools down. It cannot grow fast enough because when we
find out that the old technology is becoming obsolete, we  will
already have pupils studying the old tech for several years and that
time would be lost at that point. You cannot fix that, it is
impossible even theoretically.

What can be done is mentioning the current and possible future best
technologies while we study the basics. That will ensure not only
pupil interest to find out what "quantum phisics" is, on their own,
but will also ensure that they will know where/how to learn about it
if they need it sometime in the future.

Do not stuff information into pupils brain - teach them how to learn
and how to think.

Hope that helps :)
Best regards,
    Aigars Mahinovs        mailto:aigarius@xxxxxxxxxx
 |     .''`.         Debian GNU/Linux              LAKA         |
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