It seems like you are just getting into more serious photography and want to improve your photographic skills. In short, you should just get an SLR, which offers you more flexibility for future expansion with respect to lenses and better image quality than something like an SX series camera. The speed of an SLR is also advantageous especially if you have quick moving subjects like kids and pets. Lower noise at higher ISO will also be realized when compared to small sensor cameras like an SX30is. Shooting images in RAW can also be a lifesaver sometimes especially if you've messed up the white balance or need to recover some lost details.
Try not to confuse image quality with features. Your camera can have all the features in the world like HDR, 8 fps, Av, Tv, etc, but more importantly, is the glass (ie: lens choice) in front of you in conjunction with the skill set of the photographer. So, like you suggested, a few courses to cover the basics couldn't hurt. You may, however, end up spending more money on courses than equipment.
If budgetary constraints prevent you from buying something like a T2i or similar camera how about an XS with the 18-55mm I.S. kit lens. You can add the small 270ex flash and maybe the 50mm 1.8 to give you some more options for low light situations. Some people bash the kit lens just because it is a kit lens, but in reality, it is a very good piece of glass given it's low price point. Obviously, it's not L lens quality, but it will give you great images assuming you know how to use the camera and don't push it beyond it's limits. For the SLR beginner, this lens should suffice for most of your general walk around shooting. Adding a 50mm will also be great for low light, portrait, or night photography. It doesn't zoom, but for portraits, the 50mm can produce good background blur to isolate your subject if shot wide open.
I don't know if it has been mentioned in previous posts, but the camera body is not as important as the lens that is attached to the camera. Typically, you will keep your lenses over time and 'discard' your bodies assuming you have not switched brands. So, purchasing good lenses is more like an investment than throwing money at a temporary solution. Had I not sold my 50mm 1.8 from the 1980's with the metal mount, I'd still be using it today with my 7D.
I'm a fan of bounce flash (ie: not pointing the flash directly at the subject) and use it for about 90% of my photos which require extra light. I use a 270ex with my 7D when I'm on vacation or when I don't want to lug around the larger 580ex II. While the 270ex is not the ideal solution if you like to play with multiple lighting sources and off camera flash, it's better than nothing when more light is required.
I think it's time to move up to a DSLR if you want to eventually make money from your photos. While a camera like the SX30is may be DSLR like in features, it will not produce the same image quality of an SLR especially in challenging lighting situations or give you the speed and flexibility.
Canon 7D | Canon T1i |Canon 50mm f1.8| Canon 18-55mm f3.5-5.6 |Canon EF-S 15-85mm IS | Sigma 18-200 f3.5-6.3 DC OS | Sigma 18-50 f2.8 EX DC Macro|Crumpler 5MDH | Kata 3 in 1 20 |Crumpler 6 MDH | Canon S95 | Lowepro D-Pods 20