Submitted by Gene Howington, Guest Blogger
Last Thursday, July 21, the Texas Board of Education in an 8-0 unanimous vote opted to keep teaching evolution in high school biology classes using approved scientifically accurate textbook supplements from established mainstream publishers. They did not approve of the creationist-backed supplements from International Databases, LLC. Four times as many people showed up to testify in favor of the scientifically accurate texts as showed up to oppose them.
Although a creationist member of the Board objected to the supplement from textbook publisher Holt McDougal by releasing a list of Holt’s supposed errors involving evolution and common descent, the Board responded by noting that the list had not been signed off on by the Board of Education’s review panel in full. The Board went on to approve the Hold McDougal supplement, but submitted it for review by Commissioner of Education Robert Scott to look at the supposed errors and suggest changes to the Holt McDougal supplement. Local educators and the National Center for Science Education are confident any of Director Scott’s revisions will show the current state of evolutionary biology. In a statement released by the NCSE, NSCE Director Dr. Eugenie Scott praised the Texas Board of Education, saying “These supplements reflect the overwhelming scientific consensus that evolution is the core of modern biology, and is a central and vital concept in any biology class. That these supplements were adopted unanimously reflects a long overdue change in the board. I commend the board for its refusal to politicize science education.” This is squarely a victory in the battle to keep public education educational over the forces that would make public education into religious and/or political indoctrination.
~Submitted by Gene Howington, Guest Blogger