Re: Thinking about bee school
I would agree, don't overwhelm them. If they want to learn more about various diseases and pests, they have plenty of time in the future to read a few books and so some research on their own. Their heads will already be swimming from the barrage of information on beekeeping basics explored in the class.
On the disease and pest front I would focus mostly on mites ... their life cycle, the damage they can do to the bees, and the methods you find most effective in controlling them. If a new beekeeper can effectively control mites their first couple of seasons they should be successful without being concerned about all of the other monsters hiding in the bushes.
Some of the other bee health issues will take care of themselves if things such as hive location, ventilation, and diet are covered in detail. Stick with the most common ailments and what the beekeeper can do to help prevent them.
To everything there is a season....