Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Playing tennis on a baseball field

Via the resourceful Red State Rabble: : BOE opens new hearing process for state science standards:
Conservative members of the Kansas State Board of Education who question the validity of evolution theory today opened up a new hearing process for concerns about science standards in public schools.

Board Chairman Steve Abrams of Arkansas City said the purpose of the new process was to try to gather more information on the disputes over evolution.

But moderates on the board said the conservatives were hijacking the process of developing science standards in order to de-emphasize the teaching of evolution.

Board member Carol Rupe of Wichita said the new hearing process would mean science standards would be developed as the result of popularity contest like the television show American Idol.

This is part and parcel of a long practice of anti-science groups trying to change the rules as they go along. While the exact changes to be made are unclear, this is a transparent effort by the conservative Board majority to circumvent the science standards committee, which has a majority of science supporters.

People on both sides should respect the established process by which every other aspect of science teaching is decided. The standard that the press should apply in reporting these claims is “Would they do this if it were a question about teaching relativity?”

If not, the process is unfair, and reporters should feel no obligation to “balance” claims.