Texas is poised to call creationism science. On Jan. 24, the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board will vote on a recommendation from an advisory panel to certify the Master of Science Education degree program from the Dallas-based Institute for Creation Research. The ICR is a young-Earth creationist group. With this certification, the ICR would be producing teachers, fully equipped and with the Texas stamp of approval, to teach kids that the Earth is about 10,000 years old and that our global geology is a reflection of a recent flood described in the Old Testament. Thankfully, of course, they won’t be teaching this in public schools, since it would be illegal. Nevertheless, letting these “degreed” teachers loose in a society that is more and more dependent on a correct understanding of how the world works is a burden we can all do without. Indeed, this certification would also be a burden on Texas’ reputation, and we can probably throw in the burden of the cost of a constitutional challenge. I might also point out what a slap in the face this decision would be to students and graduates of actual science programs at universities all over this state.
There is no debate or controversy in the research community about the accuracy and usefulness of the theory of evolution in explaining the nature and diversity of life on Earth. The theory of evolution is an extraordinarily powerful tool that improves our knowledge and our technology and that underscores our connection to the family of life on Earth.
Texas Citizens for Science has more information on this issue at their website, www.texscience.org