Restoring Science Watch: Texas and science standards in schools

Obama promised a program to “restore Sceince to its rightful place” in  America during his Inauguration Address, as I pointed out here:

Today, we find Texas, home of ex-President Bush, showing how much work remai ns to be done: Texas wrestles with science standards, evolution

The crowd — as well as the review panel — was sharply split on the proposal to drop language in the current curriculum that requires teachers to address “strengths and weaknesses” of scientific theory.

Instead, a panel of science experts recommended that students use critical thinking, scientific reasoning and problem solving to analyze and evaluate scientific explanations.

Critics say the use of the word “weaknesses” has been used to undermine Darwin’s theory of evolution and promote creationism — or intelligent design.

“In science education, ‘weaknesses’ has become a code word in the culture wars to attack evolution and promote creationism,” said Kathy Miller, president of the watchdog group Texas Freedom Network. “If it weren’t, we wouldn’t see this crusade by some of the board members and outside pressure groups to keep this single word in the science standards.”

Critics of dropping the “weaknesses” mandate blame “left-wing ideology,” for trying to stifle free speech. The review panel, which was appointed by the education board, has suggested putting similar language back in.

Posted in Restoring Science Watch.