Friday, February 18, 2005
An Informed Opinion, Or Just An Opinion?
Dr. Steven Case from the Center for Science Education and Center for Research on Learning at the University of Kansas and chair of the State Science Standards Committee has written to the board in response to John Calvert's Intelligent Design Network proposal to depart from the existing curriculum development process and proceed with a "trial."
"Mr. Calvert mentioned that these discussions would be a national forum the issues at hand. I believe that our mission is to serve the children of Kansas. We need to determine what is in the best interests of our Kansas children and not allow anyone to use the citizens and specifically the children of Kansas to advance a national agenda...
"In the current format I am concerned that are not specific standards for reviewing speakers. Are the individuals qualified to speak to the issues? Do they have an opinion or an informed opinion? It also appears that there are no standards of evidence presented by speakers. What constitutes evidence that supports a speaker's opinion? For example, does publication count or is publication in a peer-reviewed journal required? What is the bar that moves us beyond opinion and makes the evidence credible? This discussion must be driven by qualifications, rules, and standards of evidence."