Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Explaining the problem

What’s the Matter with Kansas’ Science Standards?, and Why You Should Care:
"What's the Matter With Kansas' Science Standards,
And Why Should You Care?"

A presentation by Jack Krebs
President of Kansas Citizens For Science
and Member of the Science Standards Writing Committee

Jack Krebs will speak on the meaning of the changes made to the Kansas science standards by the creationist majority on the Board of Education. You’re invited to attend the following talks. All are free and open to the public
Monday, July 24, 7-9 PM, at Johnson County Community Center, Carlsen Center, Room 211, College Blvd. & Quivira, Overland Park, Kansas
Thursday, July 27, 7-9 PM,, at Hutchinson Community College & Area Vocational School, Shears Technology Center, 1300 N. Plum, Hutchinson, Kansas
Monday, July 31, 7-9 PM at Kansas City Kansas Community College - Performing Arts Center, 7250 State Avenue, Kansas City, Kansas.
See here for additional resources associated with these talks.
The Discovery Institute and Kansas' Intelligent Design Network are rolling out their misinformation campaign to try to explain how the standards that these IDC advocates back aren't IDC backing standards.

Go to the talks, bring your confused friends, and be sure to talk about this issue with people who don't understand.

For myself, I'm uninterested in the somewhat pedantic arguments over whether a blanket statement in a preamble that the document doesn't include IDC is really enough to indicate anything at all. The drafts of the standards were written by a group of professional educators, scientists and parents. They rejected the proposed changes, determining them to be invalid and unnecessary. The Board didn't like that decision, they invited a couple dozen witnesses at taxpayer expense, and spent a long weekend hearing from a group of professional IDC advocates. Then they imposed the rejected changes over the committee's objections.

To me, that says all that needs to be said. These standards are about imposing ideology rather than teaching science. They are about fighting a battle against materialism rather than fighting for knowledge.

They are a political football, not about education.

The people who imposed these standards on Kansas deserve to get fired, and the standards are suspect simply by virtue of the flawed process which produced them. That they repeat ID's talking points about irreducible complexity and alleged uncertainties about evolution is just icing.