Sunday, January 29, 2006

Groups in Kansas Preparing for Challenges on New Evolution Education Standards

The Lawrence Journal-World, of Lawrence, Kansas, reports on a public meeting held this weekend at Kansas University. A number of different speakers discussed the science standards adopted by the Kansas State Department of Education on November 8, 2005. Of note is a disclaimer that precedes the standards and specifically addresses the theory of evolution ("Rationale", page ii). Furthermore, while the KSDE does not specifically endorse the inclusion of Intelligent Design in the curriculum, it does guide teachers to "instruct students about scientific explanations of the origin of life, as well as scientific criticisms of those explanations" (grade 8-12 cluster, Standard 3 (Life Science), Benchmark 3, Indicator 7, page 77). The event at KU focused on the likelihood of legal challenges to these standards, given the outcome of the Dover, PA case regarding the required inclusion of a statement about Intelligent Design in high school Biology classes.

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