February 2011

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For the second time in about 24h, Jerry Coyne highlights significant failings in UK schoolbooks (British education FAIL: more creationism in schools « Why Evolution Is True).  Not only are there serious inaccuracies, but the text links to a creationist website.  This is nothing short of infamous.

 

 

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The Centre for Intelligent Design generally makes its arguments that life as we see it around us must have been designed by some designer with unfathomable powers (pretty much a supernatural entity resembling a deity), from the starting point that if they (C4ID) cannot understand it, then it can’t have happened naturally. This, I suppose, comes from their religious origins – all religions seem to rely on the ostensible word of some deity relayed to the faithful from some authority figure.  Just this morning, I came across this excellent cartoon (The believer’s perspective vs the scientist’s perspective) from the excellent Calamities of Nature site, which nicely illustrates this:
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Hot on the heels of a report that Government control over curriculum may not extend the the new “Free Schools” (Teaching of evolution in school science under new threat | British Humanist Association), comes news of a Creationism church in school bid (AP).  Apparently Everyday Champions Church (based in Newark, Nottinghamshire ), who believe that the Bible is God’s Word, accurate, authoritative and applicable to everyday lives are proposing to set up one of these ‘Free Schools’.  On the subject of free schools, the BHA post observes:

Despite past assurances to the contrary, the Education Secretary Rt Hon Michael Gove MP has said that applications to set up state-funded ‘free schools’ from creationist groups ‘would be considered’. The BHA’s chief executive Andrew Copson has condemned any teaching of creationism and intelligent design in science lessons, and has said that changes such as these to the school system creates a new threat to the teaching of evolution in schools.

The BHA also comment that  the “new ‘free schools’ and academies do not have to teach the national curriculum, so the scant assurances from the government that religious myths have no place in the science curriculum will not even apply to potentially thousands of schools”.

This one will run and run.  Michael Gove has announced a consultation on the content of the National Curriculum. That might eb interesting.

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