Archive for March, 2021

Education – A Factory or a Greenhouse?

March 10th, 2021

The current public school system was first established during the Industrial Revolution when factory owners needed to have productive employees. They found their raw material amongst the street urchins, who were so prolific at the time. The purpose of the schools was to turn out productive workers. This changed a bit over time so that today the purpose of schools is to turn out productive citizens. The methods have changed little.

Initially the children were taught the necessary skills of Mathematics and Literacy. History and science were added because these are integral to a “classical” education. Second language and art have always been given a lower status as extras. Physical education was added because, unlike the street urchins of the Industrial Revolution, modern children do not get much exercise. So now we have what might be considered a well-rounded curriculum for a modern public school system. And yet many of us know that it is just not working. Various different groups of parents, teachers, politicians, and interest groups have added their bandages to the system but the failings are there for everyone to see. Students are getting poorer and poorer in basic skills such as reading, writing, and calculating. They are often not able to get meaningful jobs, even with a university degree. It might come as a surprise to some, but not to many, that most university graduates are not working in either their field or a job that requires a degree two years after graduation.

When intelligent fixes, applied by highly knowledgeable and experienced people in the field, do not give the desired results, it is time to go back and assess the basic premises. There are two fundamental ideas that the public school system is built on. Primarily, that the purpose of education is to turn out productive citizens. While this is definitely true, we should question whether that is all that it should do. And we need to carefully check how we determine what will constitute a productive citizen. Judging by the statistics from after graduation, we are not doing a very good job. There is an assumption that standardized testing somehow correlates to productivity. An assumption that not only has no foundation in fact, but also does not even make sense.

The second premise is that there is a “best practices” model to be found in education. If we can just find the best method for teaching ________ (you fill in the blank – it applies to all subjects), we will have succeeded. This is a business or factory model. The problem is that children are not metal blobs which can all be formed through the same process into little “productive citizens”. There is no best practice, as any of you with more than one child will know very well.

We need to stop thinking of our schools as factories. We need to think of them as greenhouses, where each seedling receives the care and nurturing required for that individual being to grow and mature. We need to change the entire way that curriculum is delivered, that students are tested, that outcomes are measured. Until we realize that it is time to move beyond the Industrial Revolution, until we realize that children are not widgets, until we realize that productivity does not mean making all children the same, we will continue to fail in the public school system. We will continue to betray the potential of our children.

Sharon Holzscherer

Principal, Mississippi School for the Arts


An Overview of Medical Education and Training

March 10th, 2021

With a growing population and the worldwide need for curers and administrators needed to run medical facilities, the need for medical professionals all over the world is greater than ever. Today the medical and healthcare profession has become one of the world’s largest industries with a vast variety of specializations and supporting fields, involving everything from administrative and clerical work to medical research, development and technology. Indeed in the new millennia, healthcare has become a priority area for governments and corporations all over the world to invest in.


Medical education is the internationally acceptable foundation of learning the healing arts and about modern procedures and medicine used today. Every country in the world has its own, internationally acceptable format for the teaching and training of medicine and healthcare students and each has its own – closely similar – methodology to train and qualify (and license) practitioners entering into this field. All over the world, there are many great traditional medical training institutions with a philosophy focused on the comprehensive development of the future generations of experts and industry leaders in this field, and prospective medical students have a variety of choices when looking for the right institution to join, and the right Doctors to learn from.

Entry into the medical field

All over the world, different curricula are followed and entrance into medical schools for training requires prospective students to fulfill certain criteria.

– Undergraduate entry (European and Asian countries)

Undergraduate entry usually requires students to have completed at least a high school (or A levels in the UK) certificate and sometimes a year of preparatory study before entrance into dedicated medical education.

– Second entry (first professional degree – USA and Canada)

A second entry degree is one for which a student is required to have completed between 2-3 years of study (graduate level) as a pre-requisite for entrance into medical education. This degree is considered as a ‘first professional degree’ (like a PhD or MS degree) after the first degree is completed in a sciences related discipline.

– Graduate entry – Graduate entry program (GEP or GMP)

These are medical programs, occurring outside of the US and Canada, where entry is offered to college or university graduates who have already completed a degree and have taken an aptitude test (MCAT etc).

Post Graduate Education

Newly trained doctors are required to complete a certain period of practical training, usually with a hospital or clinic. Before doctors can become registered as licensed practitioners anywhere in the world, they are required to complete this supervised ‘hands-on’ training period (called a residency or internship – aka ‘scrubs’ program) which usually takes a year.

– Continued medical education (CME)

Continued medical education is a necessity in many parts of the world for doctors to maintain their practice licenses. This education is undertaken periodically by physicians and other practitioners (like medical technicians and nursing professionals) in order to maintain an up-to-date knowledge on current advances, modern practices and the latest medical technology (some examples are; IV Certification)

– Core medical education and technical medical training

Core medical training, provided at traditional medical institutions, is divided into two separate forms. These are called;

– Preclinical

These constitute of the basic sciences having to do with the human body and its functions and a deeply detailed study of pharmacology, physiology, pathology, anatomy, biochemistry etc.

– Clinical sciences

These involve a study of procedural sciences and clinical medicine and constitutes of studies in internal medicine, pediatrics, obstetrics and gynecology, psychiatry, and finally, surgery.

Other than these core areas of training and education, there are opportunities in the medical industry as medical technicians. This alternative medical line includes the following major work areas;

Central Service Technician and Surgical Technician: An expert on sterilization procedures for surgery theaters and medical surgery instruments. The work includes assisting in surgery, sterilization and proper handling of equipment.

Clinical Lab Assistant and Phlebotomy technician: This technician collects blood, saliva and urine samples and processes them for testing and actually performs these tests as well.

Dialysis Technician: trained to perform dialysis procedures.

Medical Assisting professionals: Perform administrative duties in running healthcare facilities and perform tasks related to basic patient care (prospective students require only a high school diploma in the US).

Medical Technology: Lab-work including running tests for diagnosis etc. this field requires a 4 year degree and certification from the relevant national association.

Sports Medicine professional: This area is relevant to orthopedics, biomechanics, physical and massage therapy and nutrition. In order to practice in this area, a full degree and license is required.



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DISCLAIMER: Above is a GENERAL OVERVIEW and may or may not reflect specific practices, courses and/or services associated with ANY ONE particular school(s) that is or is not advertised on

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