The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Viewpoint-Evolution in schools debated

By Francés Matteck/editor-in-chief

The great debate between the teaching of evolution and creationism in public schools was back before the State Board of Education last month.

On March 27, the board voted on proposed standards that would affect the science curriculum for the next decade.

The curriculum included two sections proposed by Chairman Don McLeroy, a self-proclaimed creationist, which recommended that students in high school biology classes study the “strengths and weaknesses” of the theory of evolution. After heated debate, both sections were narrowly shot down in an 8-7 vote.

Thank goodness for that.

Should all arguments for and against a theory be examined?

Definitely, but the language in this proposal was written in such a way as to discredit the theory of evolution and validate creationism.

McLeroy and other social conservatives claim that the teaching of evolution is biased to support the validity of the theory.

But changing the vernacular of the curriculum to discredit the theory is just as biased.

The board did approve wording that requires the critical analysis of evolution by high school science classes.

Thus, when schools start looking at textbooks in a few years, many quality options will not be chosen because they won’t qualify under the phraseology used.

Social conservatives argue that evolution is not a sufficient explanation for the diversity of life on Earth and that intelligent design is a more logical theory. 

Intelligent design is best defined by Thomas Aquinas, a 13th century philosopher.

He said that wherever complex design exists, there must have been a designer. Nature is complex; therefore, nature must have had an intelligent designer.

The evolution theory contends that animals and plants originated from other preexisting types and that distinguishable differences are due to modifications in successive generations.

A valid argument can be made for and against both of these theories.

However, the personal agendas of both creationists and supporters of evolution should not be a part of the decision process in deciding what children should and should not be learning in school.

Sly wording does not need to be injected into the curriculum to give students the opportunity to scrutinize these arguments.

 

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