[ View the story "Sound science? The battle over Texas textbooks" on Storify] Sound science? The battle over Texas textbooks New curriculum may question the theory of evolution.
AJAMStream· Tue, Aug 27 2013 09:55:43
Educators, scientists and parents are questioning what constitutes a good science education as the
Texas State Board of Education
textbooks for the 2014-2015 school year. Once textbooks are selected by the 15 members of the SBOE-appointed review board, they will be in use for the next six to ten years.
members of the board believe in
- the movement that seeks to discredit
and teach the Bible's "
" as science.
A documentary called
followed the efforts of a previous review board to influence what Texan children learn in their public schools:
The Revisionaries - Official Trailer (2012)kinolorber
Texas Freedom Network
six review board members as creationists or as "
," who argue that schools should teach evolution's flaws and present students with alternate explanations for Earth's creation.
Those opposed to the SBOE review board's influence believe that watering down widely-accepted scientific theories paves the way for the teaching of creationism.
across the US
teach creationism. The fight over the Texas curriculum, however, does have implications for public school education nationally:
Texas originally acquired its power over the nation’s textbook supply because it paid 100 percent of the cost of all public school textbooks, as long as the books in question came from a very short list of board-approved options.nybooks.com
The books on the Texas list were likely to be mass-produced by the publisher in anticipation of those sales, so other states liked to buy them and take advantage of the economies of scale.nybooks.com
The SBOE review board has caused
in the past over textbook revisions that
the role of women and minorities and
to Christian and Republican contributions to American history.
The board's role in omitting information may be more influential than its proposed amendments - it has ruled against teaching about Cesar Chavez, Oscar Romero, Sikhism, and the genre of hip hop, among other topics.
The Texas Textbook Massacrebravenewfoundation
On social media, there are diverse opinions on the role evolution and creationism should play in the classroom:
Absolutely!! This nation was founded by religious views. ( 1 nation under God) That's the way it should stay! God Bless America.Joseph Newton
Exactly right. Creationism simply doesn't fit into science and the it doesn't meet the requirements of the scientific method, therefore it shouldn't be in a public school science class. It's that simple.repealcreationism
My creator created science. There is no way there's not an omniscient mind behind all of life.Patricia Knapp Palmer
@elisegaro @AJAMStream Harsh consequences if Txns can't use science & critical thinking 4 public health, energy infrastructure & sea-levelsJennifer Darrouzet
Sure, as soon as they teach evolution in church. Religious education is the responsibility of the parents, not the public school system.Megan Page