The staff of a national newspaper is shocked and appalled:
Biology classes in kindergarten and elementary school do not mention Charles Darwin’s theory that all life evolved from common ancestors, and in middle school it is only alluded to as part of general discussions, the TV report said.
Four years ago, the high school curriculum was revised, the report said. Previously there had been one unit on evolution in the matriculation exams. In the new curriculum, the religiously sensitive theory of common descent has been omitted, and replaced with classes on species survival and genetic modifications and adaptations based on environmental factors.
If Israel is reasonably up-to-date on science matters (check the Nobel Prize stats), many biology teachers may know that the Tree of Life concept is actually coming under fire now, principally due to greater knowledge of horizontal gene transfer among life forms—change over time without ancestry. See, for example, David Quammen’s new mainstream book, The Tangled Tree:A Radical New History of Life.
How important is horizontal gene transfer? We don’t know. What we do know is that it could be the more backward or politically complicit folk who are still splintering lecterns on behalf of the Fundamental Truth of the Tree of Life.
“Not teaching this is actually removing a very, very fundamental part of science and making it inaccessible to Israeli children,” said Dr. Liat Ben David, the general director of the Davidson Institute for Science Education.
The Education Ministry defended its curriculum.
“Learning the principles of adaptation to the environment is compulsory in middle school,” it told Channel 10. “The theory of evolution itself is taught as an optional class in high schools.” TOI staff, “Israeli schools largely avoid teaching evolution — report” at Times of Israel
“very, very fundamental part of science”? Can’t you just hear the rubbish rattling down the can when people talk that way? You’d think Darwin’s theory was the “times tables” in arithmetic. If it were, of course, SJW’s would attack it and Big Science would be silent.
So, is Israel the new Louisiana in the Middle East? A decade after the education act that permitted teachers to quit worshipping Darwin in the Bayou, it turns out that swamp monsters are not on the loose.
There is no evidence that failure to teach Darwinism as fundamental in biology is harmful to students’ understanding of biology. Any more than failure to teach social justice concepts in math is harmful to students’ understanding of math. Both concepts are simply propaganda points and they carry the same risk: Students graduate who can recite the mantras of Darwinism—or social justice—but do not know basic biological processes or mathematical operations.
They’ll be plenty woke and ready to hit the streets. But very slow.
See also: Professor: Maths should be a movement against “objects, truths, and knowledge” We’ve heard for decades that consciousness is an evolved illusion and that our brains were shaped for fitness, not for truth. The subversion of mathematics to propaganda and job protection should not come as any surprise.
Darwinian Jerry Coyne minimizes the significance of horizontal gene transfer