Censoring criticism of evolution in public schools actually hurts evolution education
Here is what actually happened in Dover. The Kitzmiller v. Dover opinion said (pp. 112-113, 120):
. . . . .Despite the fact that the teachers strongly opposed using Pandas as a companion text, they agreed that Pandas could be placed in the classroom as a reference text as a compromise with the Board. (29:111 (Buckingham); 12:136 (J. Miller); 13:88 (Spahr)). Baksa testified that no one could construe the teachers as having supported Pandas in any way, reference text or otherwise, which is evidenced by Jen Miller's statement that if the teachers compromised with the Board, "maybe this will go away again." (35:120 (Baksa); 12:136 (J. Miller)). It is patently evident that by this point, the teachers were both weary from the extended contention concerning the teaching of evolution, and wary of retribution in the event they persisted in opposing Buckingham and his cohorts on the Board . . . . . .(emphasis added)
Baksa provided highly pertinent information concerning the position of the teachers throughout this process. He testified that the teachers did not support Pandas in any way, but that they made compromises to insure the purchase of the biology book entitled "Biology." (35:119-20 (Baksa)).
Whether or not the teachers were "weary from the extended contention" or "wary of retribution," they did agree that the book could be placed in the classroom as a reference text. And in the end, the book was not placed in the classroom but was only placed in the school library and the teachers were required to read to the science classes a statement saying that copies of the book were in the library. Also, the Dover opinion falsely stated that "[t]he Board failed to consider the views of the District's science teachers" (page 131) -- the record shows that the teachers were consulted, though arguably they should have been consulted more and heeded more. IMO the teachers' suggestions for minor changes in the ID statement should have been accepted.
Labels: Evolution controversy (1 of 4)