Tuesday, October 10, 2006


Straight A's

The Michigan State Board of Education got it right!

On Tuesday, the board approved public school curriculum guidelines that support the teaching of evolution in science classes – but not intelligent design.

Intelligent design instruction could be left for other classes in Michigan schools, but it doesn't belong in science class, according to the unanimously adopted guidelines.

"The intent of the board needs to be very clear," said board member John Austin, an Ann Arbor Democrat. "Evolution is not under stress. It is not untested science."
In the face of pressure from the state legislature and the accidental injection of this issue into the gubernatorial election by conservative Dick DeVos, the board is to be commended for doing what is right for education instead of what might be politic.

Well done!
Opps, Maybe Make That a B+
It seems I may have spoken a tad too soon. A little more searching around found this:

The board had delayed a vote on adopting the science curriculum standards for one month at the request of the Republican-led Legislature, which wanted more time to weigh in on the issue.

Lawmakers were successful in persuading the state board to make one potentially significant switch. Language that already was included elsewhere in content expectations provided to schools also will be put in a notebooks that are given to teachers.

That language encourages science teachers to emphasize critical thinking, scientific inquiry and the use of relevant scientific data to assess the validity of scientific theories.
Now, nothing bad needs come from this, but those are code words for ID misrepresentations of the current state of the evidence for evolution that, themselves, are borrowed straight from their less sophisticated creationist brethren. Such language may serve as cover for individual teachers who want to introduce creationism into their classes and for local school boards who want to encourage such dishonesty. That, of course, has been the Discovery Institute's fallback position for some time now.

So maybe we have to make that two-and-a-half cheers.

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