Tuesday, April 12, 2005


Kansas Science Draft to be Presented at Board Meeting

Kansas Citizens for Science is urging supporters of science education to attend the April 12 and 13 state Board of Education meetings in Hutchinson, Kansas. There will be an Open Forum on Tuesday, April 12 at 10:30. On Wednesday, April 13, at 9:50 a.m. state science standards committee chairperson Steve Case will present the second draft (Draft 2) of the state science standards as recommended by the committee.

The Board is allowing the Intelligent Design minority to present their Minority report – another example of the Board giving the Intelligent Design minority unprecedented opportunities to present their arguments to the public. However, this will also give the pro-science Board members an opportunity to question the Intelligent Design representative, and they may have some pointed questions.

Another issue that may come up is the external review of the standards. Standard procedure would be to send Draft 2 out for external review. An excellent organization, McRel, has bid on being the external reviewer, but this was tabled at a previous Board meeting. No doubt the pro-science Board members will want the Minority proposal sent out for external review also, but the majority on the Board may wish to forestall or even forgo the external review. This will be an issue to watch for at the meeting.

And last, of course, is the issue of the “science hearings” the Board has scheduled in May. The Board is giving the intelligent design advocates a stage to present their ideas to a Board subcommittee that is known to be sympathetic with the Minority’s anti-evolutionary and creationist ideas.

Scientists around the world have joined the majority on the standards writing committee, the pro-science Board members, and Kansas Citizens for Science in refusing to legitimize these hearings by participating. This issue will undoubtedly hang over the Board meeting Tuesday and Wednesday even though it is not officially on the agenda.The Board meeting is at: Hutchinson Community College, Shears Technology Center - Justice Theatre at 1300 North Plum in Hutchinson, Kansas 620-665-3500


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