Skeptic News: Teach the controversy

20121103-043800.jpgFrom: Americans United Blog

The school board of Central, La., recently approved a policy that will allow public school science teachers to present alternatives to evolution.

The resolution, which was adopted 6-0, is intended to let teachers address so-called scientific “controversies.” The Baton Rouge Advocate quoted Central Community School Board member Jim Lloyd as saying, “We believe the resolution will give teachers the academic freedom they deserve to teach the controversy where appropriate.”

Advocates for evolution, however, were dismayed by the new policy.

“It’s absolutely creationist code language we’ve seen come up again and again in other states,” Barbara Forrest, founder of the Louisiana Coalition for Science, told the Advocate. (Forrest is a member of Americans United’s Board of Trustees.)

Americans United was equally disapproving of the move. In a Wall of Separation blog post, AU Senior Policy Analyst Rob Boston said: “In the scientific community, there is no ‘controversy’ over evolution. It is considered the foundation of biology.”

In 2008, Louisiana lawmakers passed a bill that permits “supplemental” materials in science classes as long as those materials “promote critical thinking skills, logical analysis and open and objective discussions of scientific theories studied.”

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