Tuesday, October 18, 2005


Kansas Science Standards Confusing, Poorly Written, and Just Plain Wrong

The Mid-Continent Research for Education and Learning, hired to evaluate Kansas' revised science standards, says they are confusing and poorly written.

This, of course is true, but the real problem, in our view, is that the new standards make false statements about what we know. Here are three examples from Benchmark 3, "The student will understand the major concepts of the theory of biological evolution" Indicator 7, "Scientific Criticisms" on page 88:

a. A lack of empirical evidence for a “primordial soup” or a chemically hospitable pre-biotic atmosphere;

b. The lack of adequate natural explanations for the genetic code, the sequences of genetic information necessary to specify life, the biochemical machinery needed to translate genetic information into functional biosystems, and the formation of
proto-cells; and

c. The sudden rather than gradual emergence of organisms near the time that the Earth first became habitable


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