You already know about the new science standards proposed by the National Research Council. They’re intended as voluntary guidelines to be adopted by all states for use in their public schools. You can read about it here: A Framework for K-12 Science Education.
The science standards include evolution, and we’re already written about the negative reaction of Kansas (see Kansas Creationism: “We’re Not Crackpots”). Now it’s time to turn our attention to Texas.
In the San Marcos Mercury of San Marcos, Texas we read No rush to adopt national science standards in Texas. Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us:
New nationally developed common science standards may be on the horizon, but it is not likely that they will make their way into Texas classrooms soon. Make that a “zero percent chance,” said Barbara Cargill, the Republican chairwoman of the State Board of Education [SBOE].
As you know, Cargill is the latest in a series of flaming creationists to be appointed by Texas Governor Rick Perry to be chairman of the Texas SBOE. Her immediate predecessor was Gail Lowe (another creationist), but the Texas Senate voted to reject that nomination. Before that, Perry had appointed the infamous creationist dentist, Don McLeroy, who was also rejected by the Senate.
The newspaper then tells us:
“I don’t see it happening, with the fact that we just adopted science standards, and we’ve been averse to adopting anything else coming from a national origin,” said Thomas Ratliff, a Republican who represents northeast Texas on the 15-member board.
If Ratliff feels that way, then the standards have no chance in Texas. It was Ratliff who defeated McLeroy in a primary election back in 2010. The article concludes with this:
Cargill said that when the time comes to revise the state’s science curriculum, the board will look at the Next Generation standards. But she said that the standards will most likely serve as a reference guide, not a rulebook. “We write our own standards here in Texas,” she said.
But that’s not all. We have some commentary from the neo-theocrats at the Discovery Institute‘s creationist public relations and lobbying operation, the Center for Science and Culture (a/k/a the Discoveroids, a/k/a the cdesign proponentsists).
The Discoveroid blog has this post: Texas Says Not Now and Maybe Never to the Educrats. It’s by Joshua Youngkin, who says, with bold font added by us and his links omitted:
Historically, K-12 science education has been left to the individual states. But as we’ve earlier reported, the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) would employ uniform standards to subtly impose on every state “the one right way” for every teacher to teach about evolution and climate change.
It’s difficult to know how voluntary standards can “subtly impose” anything on anyone, but let’s read on. Youngkin quotes from some newspaper that says:
[D]espite supporters’ insistence that the standards have been created “by states, for states,” there are already stirrings of the anti-federal-government backlash that greeted the common core standards.
We’ve seen straw-man arguments before, but that’s amazing. Then, after reporting Cargill’s position, Youngkin says:
Other states: take heed of Texas’s example. On K-12 science education, as with most things, local decision-making is still the best decision-making. Anything else is the substitution of foreign interest for local interest.
That’s how it ends. The Discoveroids have a relationship with the creationists on the Texas SBOE, so their position is that the voluntary standards are a “foreign interest.” Texas doesn’t need any of that durned “foreign” science like evolution. They’ve got their own science in Texas — it’s called creationism — and the Discoveroids like it.
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