Tuesday, January 20, 2009

More concern in Texas

My very first post on this blog addressed the Great State of Texas, and here, over a year later, we are still hoping that Texas will do the right thing, the responsible thing, the intelligent thing. I am still optimistic, but I am concerned.

The 6 appointed reviewers of the Texas State Science Curriculum Standards are split, which should come as no surprise. For some reason the State decided to include two members of the Discovery Institute on the review panel and a chemistry professor from Baylor. These three had publicly supported the whole 'strengths and weaknesses' debate as a platform for their own views and they are still doing it.

I was extremely hopeful when the first draft of the science standards did not include the whole strengths and weaknesses argument, but much politicking later they modified it for the second draft, which now included the word 'limitations' rather than weaknesses. Currently the final draft says "The third and final draft says students should be able to "analyze and evaluate scientific explanations."

Now it's back to the politicking and a hearing set for 21 Jan before the State School Board, whose president is an avowed Creationist. I am still hopefully and I think still optimistic. Texas has an opportunity to not allow politics, religious agendas, and outright deceit from driving its science curriculum and I hope that do the right thing! Teach science as science! Don't get snowed by the Discovery Institute's marketing, support Science not Ideology!

Join in with the 21st Century Science Coalition ( http://www.texasscientists.org) and make your voice heard tomorrow!

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