14 September 2010

Texas Governor wades back into Texas K-12 science standards debate

You know, I was actually worried that I would not have anything to blog about the Texas education system and evolution for a long while.

As if on cue...

The San Angelo Standard-Times has an interview with Governor Rick Perry.

Explain where you stand on evolution-creationism being taught in school.

I am a firm believer in intelligent design as a matter of faith and intellect, and I believe it should be presented in schools alongside the theories of evolution. The State Board of Education has been charged with the task of adopting curriculum requirements for Texas public schools and recently adopted guidelines that call for the examination of all sides of a scientific theory, which will encourage critical thinking in our students, an essential learning skill.

The Governor’s personal beliefs are his, and I have no interest in arguing those. But he is wading into an incredible mess when he suggests that it be taught in schools along evolution. That would be illegal, following the U.S. Supreme Court decision Edwards v. Aguillard.

It is the prerogative of state governors to rail again national laws and argue they should be changed. Welcome to federalism. But that the Governor would knowingly support an illegal policy is another matter entirely.

Another candidate for the job of Governor, Bill White, answers the same question:

Educators and local school officials, not the governor, should determine science curriculum.

Hat tip to Pharyngula.

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