Friday, February 13, 2009

Science, Not "Creationism"

The following came across my email desk this morning. If you, or any of your relations, live in Texas and you believe that science should be taught in your public schools, regardless of religious denomination or absence thereof in your life, then pay heed:

Take Action Now to Ensure that Texas Kids Learn Science, not Ideology, in Public Schools

Creationists Besiege State Board of Education with Calls to Dumb Down Science Education in Texas Public Schools

As we mark the 200th anniversary of the birth of Charles Darwin, the religious right has launched a new and ferocious attack on science education in Texas public schools.

Last month the State Board of Education narrowly voted against a curriculum requirement that students learn phony “weaknesses” of evolution promoted by creationists. Creationist pressure groups have responded with fury in the press. They have even viciously attacked the religious faith of board members who support giving Texas kids a sound science education.

And now the Texas Freedom Network has learned that creationists are flooding board members’ offices with thousands of e-mails and phone calls critical of evolution. They are demanding that the board reverse course in a final vote next month and require that science classes teach anti-evolution arguments that mainstream scientists debunked long ago.

This is outrageous. Texans cannot permit the religious right to bully elected officials into voting against the interests of Texas families and the mainstream values we all support. Supporters of sound science education cannot stand aside while far-right pressure groups try to distort and undermine the education of an entire generation of Texas schoolchildren.

Take Action! SUFS
The State Board of Education will meet on March 25-27 to take a final vote on the proposed science curriculum standards. It’s important that you take the following actions to ensure that board members vote for standards that put sound science ahead of ideology in our kids’ public schools:

1. Tell your State Board of Education member that you oppose efforts to water down instruction on evolution in public school science classes.
- Ask you board member to vote to adopt the sound science standards proposed in December by curriculum writing teams made up of teachers and academics.
- Oppose requiring that students learn phony “weaknesses” of evolution.
- Ask your board member to vote to strip out any amendments approved by the board in January that undermine instruction on evolution.

You can find the name of your board member by clicking here. It’s best to write your board member in your own words and send your e-mail to: However, you can also click here to send your board member a pre-written e-mail.

2. Submit your comments about the proposed standards to the Texas Education Agency. You can read the standards by clicking here. Then scroll down to Proposed Revisions to 19 TAC Chapter 112, Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills for Science, Subchapter A, Elementary, Subchapter B, Middle School, and Subchapter C, High School. Send your comments to TEA to this e-mail address:

3. Sign up to testify at the State Board of Education’s public hearing on the proposed science standards on March 25. For information about how to testify, click here.

To find out how your SBOE member voted in January, and to stay informed on this issue, please click here.

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