February 2019 Editorial

Thoughts from the editor for 2019 – education and training, standards, creatives, doctors, dancers and dog breeders.

Education and training are two very different animals.  You need the first in order to understand the possibilities that could be available to you in the second. Then we come to the last in my trilogy of learning and that is experience.  The most costly and time consuming of the three, which many seem to think they can leapfrog.

Another favourite is the importance and relevance of standards.  They can be applied to so many facets of our lives, impact on and affect us in ways that appear not to always be in our best interest.

One area that particularly interests me is when standards are applied to education and particularly my own field of Arts & Culture with particular emphasis on generic dance and ballet specifically.  The very nature of creatives is to break the mould that constrains them and be inventive. 

Doctors, dancers and dog breeders have to deal with bodies.  This tends to result in a zooming into specific areas of focus.  We all know what happens when we zoom in with our cameras.  We see more and more of a certain small area but less of the full picture and that is what I see currently in many endeavours and not only those already mentioned.

To achieve a beneficial and useful outcome in any field one should first look at what is a desired result and who you will be training. An updating mechanism should be built into the process with evaluations on relevance and quality in our ever changing world by everyone not some authority with no knowledge.

Are we training, teaching, educating in a way that is beneficial to the humans or animals etc that we earn an income from?  Is an income possible?  Is it justifiable?

I do not have all the answers but I have observed some very disturbing trends.  In a nutshell, some people are learning more and more about less and less (specialists in every field) and many people are learning less and less from a system that is defunct with pockets of excellence in all fields.  Both very expensive trends and not always in our best interest.