I’ve heard about a number of bills introduced across the country this year singling out the teaching of evolution as being controversial, but to my knowledge, the action yesterday in Tennessee was the first case where such a bill was approved by a legislative chamber.
Over at State EdWatch, my colleague Sean Cavanagh writes about the Tennessee bill, which cleared the state’s House of Representatives by a vote of 70-23. Sean notes that the bill identifies certain scientific topics, including evolution and global warming, as having the potential to “cause controversy.” The Republican-sponsored measure, he explains, seeks to protect teachers who help students “analyze, critique, and review” the “strengths and weakness” of scientific theories. Critics say the bill is meant to single out evolution for skeptical treatment.
A version of this news article first appeared in the Curriculum Matters blog.