Sunday, December 16, 2007

Give an inch . . .

Florida, in an effort to avoid being embroiled in the political argument of evolution and intelligent design require evolution as part of the science curriculum, but they don't call it evolution, they call it "Change over time". Check this out.

In a recent report the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, a nonprofit group in Washington, D.C., that focuses on education reform graded Florida science standards as "disappointing, due to a prevalence of errors in fact and presentation," "naive," "scanty," "nebulous" and "vague".

Florida state Board of Education appointed a 45-member task force to rewrite the standards to make them more detailed and more rigorous. One of their recommendations is to call the study of evolution . . . Evolution.

Christian fundamentalists, the Discovery Institute, and one school board member disagree with that. On the board is Donna Callaway, a former principal from Leon County. Callaway recently told the Florida Baptist Witness newspaper that she will vote down the new standards. As she explained, "I agree completely that evolution should be taught with all of the research and study that has occurred. However, I believe it should not be taught to the exclusion of other theories of origin of life."

Florida has a problem with very poor science education standards and a minority is working to undermine the process unless their personal and religious points of view are given an opening into the curriculum. I hope the State School Board can summon the intestinal fortitude and deny them this legal pretext of validation. They need to stand firmer than when they decided to try and avoid the political controversy. If they had used the word Evolution in the first place, they wouldn't be having this argument now. Give in a little bit and you can see what happens!

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