“Education does not even start until you realise your time is your own.” – Shaz Shafiq
I went to the University of Bradford, I studied Economics with 2:2 Class Degree. I was a C and D student at High School and the same throughout college. At every time of the education system, I could not help but ask one question repeatedly… How do I monetise what I am learning?
This question led me through a process of self education… unfortunately I did not have the luxury of having a budget for research and development… my thing was testing and failing…
The following flows from my experiences and education, to what my ideal education system would look like:
Sales. The most important skill of all is SALES, whether that is in Dentistry, Optometry, Business or in the corporate field. We are constantly in a position where we must persuade and articulate our ideas and points across to other people. There should be separate classes solely on Sales and Marketing, to show people how to execute on ideas.
Purpose. Rather than pretend to prepare kids for the real world by keeping them hermetically sealed from it, provide abundant real-world experience including mentorships and apprenticeships outside of school. Use extended field trips.
Location. Rather than base schooling in the bureaucratic public sector with its “one size fits all” approach, put it back in the private (for-profit) and civil (not-for-profit) sectors where innovation and catering to specific markets and needs can occur.
Academics. Rather than devote the bulk of the time to memorisation of idle facts, prefer the teaching of processes start to finish. Engaging the mind and hands together provides knowledge that lasts a lifetime, unlike fleeting memorisation.
Grades. Rather than the insincerity of passing subjective judgment on student work, put student work on display leading to discussions of students’ ideas.
Play. Rather than long days of structured activity with even play adult-directed, allow for abundant free play.
Skill-base. Rather than ignore all-important listening and speaking skills, use class discussion purposively to resolve issues, plan, come up with ideas and so on.
Conflict resolution. Rather than discipline flowing top-down from authority figure to student(s), have students resolve all issues directly themselves.
Curriculum. Rather than pre-digested study materials and canned “experiments,” have students engage in realistic projects with uncertain outcomes so that they learn to cope with ambiguity, uncertainty and failure.
Engagement. Rather than each class be an island unto itself, arrange activities for age mixing in meaningful ways. Have older students mentor younger ones.
Times have changed, with the internet coming into play. Ignorance of the importance of using the internet to succeed is absolutely absurd. More attention should be given on how to execute ideas via sales and marketing than just being taught product knowledge…
Students who are self-assured, self-actualised, skilled, with a good start towards mastery of a discipline and well-versed at employing their rights. To me, this is education.
This is why I do what I do and this is what pulled me in to the education system… at Pitman Training Liverpool & Warrington… We are more than just the typical training, where EXECUTION i.e. Sales & Marketing, is at the forefront of every training programme.