From Catherine Offord at The Scientist:
Arizona’s Department of Education is considering new school science standards that would replace or alter references to evolution. School officials behind the change have argued that the wording of the standards, which are available in draft form for public comment until May 28, should be adjusted to reflect uncertainty in the theory.
Although [state superintendent of Education Diane] Douglas has publicly expressed her support for creationism and intelligent design in the past, she emphasizes that there are no moves to include any reference to them in the new standards. “My personal belief and my professional opinion are two very different things,” she tells 3TV/CBS 5.
The draft standards have not been well received by many school officials, teachers, and parents in Arizona. “Parents like me should be concerned because our kids need to be prepared to compete in a scientifically-sound world,” Tory Roberg, director of government affairs for the Secular Coalition for Arizona, tells The Arizona Republic. “Colleges and universities use evolutionary basics and build on this in advanced science classes. We can’t give our kids a second-rate education. We must demand the best.” More.
As a matter of fact, there is considerable ferment around many areas of evolution, as anyone who reads Uncommon Descent will know. Why does Mr. Roberg think that kids will be better “prepared to compete in a scientifically-sound world” if they are encouraged to treat science as a set of dogmatic truths as opposed to its usual state – especially today? As one minor instance, just think what genome mapping has done for hallowed truths about various species? What epigenetics is doing to genetic fundamentalism? Anyone heard from junk DNA or Dollo’s Law lately?
No supporters of the changes were interviewed for the Scientist article.
See also: Phylogenetic of plants is a mess
Epigenetics: “[n]ew ideas closely related to Lamarck’s eighteenth-century views have become central to our understanding of genetics”
Grand evolution theory for complex animals in ruins; fossil is, in fact, a jellyfish