We first spotted this in the Times-Picayune of New Orleans, Louisiana. Their headline is Some Shreveport teachers promote creationism, website reports.
Whoa — wait a minute! That’s a real newspaper. Why are they reporting something they read at a website? They explain that at the start:
Some teachers at a Shreveport high school have promoted creationism in the classroom, anti-creationism activist Zack Kopplin wrote Tuesday (June 2) in Slate.
Aha — it’s Zack Kopplin, who is well-known to readers of this humble blog as a tireless campaigner against the infamous and insidiously-named Louisiana Science Education Act (the LSEA). We wrote about Zack’s last article in Slate a couple of weeks ago — see Zack & the Louisiana Creationism Repeal Bill. It drove the Discoveroids crazy — see Discovery Institute Attacks Zack Kopplin.
There’s no reason to excerpt any more from the newspaper. Here’s the article in Slate, which is certain to arouse the Discoveroids to even greater frenzy: The Bible v. the Constitution. We know you’re going to click over there to read it, so we’ll only give you a few excerpts, with a bit of bold font added by us for emphasis:
When a student in Louisiana opens her textbook in biology class, she might not have the standard Miller and Levine Biology with a dragonfly on the cover, and she might not ever learn about evolution. For some Louisiana public school students, their science textbook is the Bible, and in biology class they read the Book of Genesis to learn the “creation point of view.”
Through a public records request, I obtained dozens of emails from the Bossier Parish school district that specifically discuss teaching creationism. Shawna Creamer, a science teacher at Airline High School, sent an email to the principal, Jason Rowland, informing him of which class periods she would use to teach creationism. “We will read in Genesis and them [sic] some supplemental material debunking various aspects of evolution from which the students will present,” Creamer wrote.
And that’s only the beginning! It goes on like that, one disclosure after another. Here are some examples:
In another email exchange with Rowland [principal of Airline High School in Bossier Parish], a parent had complained that a different teacher, Cindy Tolliver, actually taught that evolution was a “fact.” This parent complained that Tolliver was “pushing her twisted religious beliefs onto the class.” Principal Rowland responded, “I can assure you this will not happen again.”
I obtained a PowerPoint about the origin of life that is used in Ouachita Parish Junior High School’s life science classes. It presents evolution as just a theory and says that theories are “possibly true” but “not known or proven to be true.” Creationism is also presented as a theory and given equal footing with evolution. Students are taught that the “[b]asis for creationism is founded in Genesis of the Bible,” and “Creationism relies on the claim that there is a ‘purpose’ to all creation known only to the creator.”
Then he says:
Louisiana school districts are clearly breaking the law all the time, but the Louisiana Legislature still refuses to repeal the Science Education Act. These newly released emails, from districts across the state, show that this law is being used systematically to teach creationism in public schools. This puts Louisiana on a collision course with a First Amendment lawsuit.
Yes, but when is the long-expected court challenge going to happen? That’s difficult to predict. Zack tells us:
All it will take is for one Louisiana parent or student to sue the state for endorsing religion in public school, and teaching creationism will become illegal again. But for the moment, because Louisiana politicians refuse to take action, Louisiana students are reading Genesis in science class.
Go ahead, click over there to read it. We’ll be watching to see what the Discoveroids are going to say. That should be fun.
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