Monday, June 18, 2007


Thrifty With the Truth?

As part of a review, the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA) is considering including Intelligent Design Creationism in its science course curriculum:

Intelligent design (ID) is one of a wide range of theories of origin currently taught as part of the Religious, Moral and Philosophy Studies (RMPS) SQA course, but could be moved elsewhere as part of the review. A spokesman for the SQA said: "It happens to sit in RMPS just now. If and when it does becomes part of the curriculum for science, which it may well do as part of this review, then that's where it could sit."
The reaction of at least some professional educators seems less than outraged:

Alastair Noble is an educational consultant who has been invited by both denominational and non- denominational secondary schools to present ID on a scientific basis. He said: "I gauge a growing level of interest from pupils and teachers. My guess is that the (TiS) DVDs are being used by a small but significant number of teachers."

"It deserves formal consideration. It presents a scientific challenge to the construct that the world is the result of blind and purposeless forces."

Ian Fraser, director of education for Inverclyde, is not in favour of prohibiting Truth in Science material and accepts teachers are free to present ID informally. He said: "I have no objection to intelligent design being advanced as one theory, but most teachers don't have time. I trust head teachers to make their own decisions about what is appropriate." ...

An education spokeswoman for the Scottish Executive said: "We're not prescriptive as to books or materials. We provide guidelines, and within those guidelines it's up to schools to decide."
While there is negative reaction from educators as well, the clearest thinking may come from a somewhat surprising source:

Michael McGrath, director of the Scottish Catholic Education Service, made it clear intelligent design was not part of science teaching in Catholic schools. He said: "There is a distinction between what is appropriate for religious education and what is appropriate for science. We wouldn't confuse one with the other."

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