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Petition Tag - creationism
Creationism is known, and officially acknowledged, to be contrary to scientific fact. We therefore demand that creationism should not be presented as a valid scientific position, nor creationist websites and resources be promoted, in publicly funded schools or in any youth activities run on publicly funded school premises.
Despite existing Department for Education guidance on the teaching of Creationism, recent events show additional protection is necessary.
This April, all Year 11 children in a state funded school were brought together and had a visitor introduced to them as a scientist. He then spent the next one and a half hours presenting these sixteen year olds with a series of well polished Young Earth Creationist claims, described as scientific theory.
The visitor was Philip Bell, a full time Evangelical preacher from Creation Ministries International (CMI) who presents creationist views as scientific facts and denies evolution. He states on his website that his preferred method of evangelising is infiltrating at a grassroots level as he feels this has more successful conversions. CMI described the school visit on their web site as ‘ministry to school children’.
The parents knew nothing of this until after the event, when one, who happens to be a trained Geologist, and thus qualified to evaluate what had been said, wrote to the school to complain.
The Chair of Governors replied that this was all part of the Religious Education (RE)curriculum and that she should not worry because they also invited a speaker ‘to present the case for evolutionism’ so that both sides were heard, both ‘scientists’ were given equal time and both talks were presented to the children as ‘a belief’.
These recent events at St Peter's Church of England School, Exeter, show creationists are now openly using RE classes and the school timetable to advance their claim to be offering a valid scientific alternative to established knowledge, even within the State school system.
The school is adamant it has done nothing wrong despite presenting creationism on equal terms with modern science to sixteen year olds.
In a recent statement, the Department for Education has stated that secretary of state for education, Michael Gove is ‘crystal clear’ that creationism has no scientific validity and should not be taught as science. Yet here we have a school presenting Creationism as a valid scientific position, and justifying this by reference to Religious Education.
Mr Gove might be keen to show that his Free Schools could not possibly succumb to such infiltration, but this incident demonstrates that even state-maintained schools need more clarity and better protection.
This is unacceptable.
As of 21/4/11, the following organisations have already lent their support:
British Centre for Science Education
National Secular Society
There are several nonscholarly sources appearing on Google Scholar. These nonscholarly sources are AnswersInGenesis.org, Creation.com (Creation Ministries International), and ICR.org (Institute for Creation Research). These three groups do not produce scholarly material.
The information in their publications is deeply biased to represent Young Earth Creationism. The material that they publish is devoid of real scientific research and yet attempts to present it as if it were real scientific research. On top of this, these organizations also give out incorrect information as a way to dissuade people from believing real scientific research into matters such as the age of the Earth, and the validity of scientific knowledge such as the Theory of Evolution by natural selection.
Because Google Scholar has some weight, especially to youths doing research for class, it is highly inappropriate for these articles to show up under Google Scholar. Articles such as these, that have a distinct religious agenda and even go as far as giving incorrect information about science, should not be allowed on Google Scholar.
The teaching of Evolution in the school system, is mandatory, This should be a choice. A child should not fail the class, Because they choose not to listen to this theory. If evolution is taught in School. Why not allow creation to be taught also.
Why should a child be forced to listen to this theory, if they do not believe this concept? Teach Creation also. And let the student choose. Let us Christians have a voice! Give Jesus and creation a chance. Give a student the chose of what he may believe. Why is evolution taught as a fact!
Let's give the people a chance to hear the truth God created our universe.
Petition signing period 請願書簽署期限：
2009/05/30, 12:00nn - 2009/6/30, 12:00nn
In Hong Kong, the new senior secondary school biology and combined science curriculum effective from September 2009 contain a statement in the part of evolution that may encourage unscientific theories to be propagated in science classes. The related passage reads:
"In addition to Darwin's theory, students are encouraged to explore other explanations for evolution and the origins of life, to help illustrate the dynamic nature of scientific knowledge."
News media reported that at least 31 secondary schools in Hong Kong have already admitted to teach Creationism and/or Intelligent Design as an alternative to the theory of evolution during science lessons. The Education Bureau first turned their back to the complaining scientists from the University of Hong Kong, but later stated in a TV program that creationism is not “considered as an alternative to Darwin’s theory”.
In the same TV program a secondary school principal lashed out at the scientists for being narrow-minded by expelling religious ideas. Another secondary school principal said on the newspaper that "Our religious belief does not approve of evolution" . In early May 2009, a group of 62 people, including educators and scientists, signed a statement calling for controversial guidelines to be retained because it is "stimulating, balanced, non-biased and has worked well" .
To date, the theory of evolution is the only robust and established scientific theory regarding the biodiversity on Earth. It has stood numerous tests ever since publishing, and is supported by overwhelming evidence and confirmed by other areas of sciences like biochemistry, genetics, anatomy, physics and geology. This central theory in biology has substantially contributed to many of the greatest scientific and technological advancements in modern medicine and agriculture, thus has saved many lives and improved their living.
The other "explanations", such as Creationism or Intelligent Design, are not even consistent with the definition of science, and have been dismissed by scientists worldwide as pseudo-sciences with strong reasons. Scientists have already stated openly and widely that these unscientific ideas should not be taught in science classes .
The problematic statement in the new biology and combined science syllabuses will open a loophole for pseudo-sciences, resulting in a great damage to quality education in Hong Kong, whereby knowledge on the theory and fact of evolution of life on Earth are being concealed, denied, or confused with ideas or notions not testable by science, and thus contradicts the objectives of science education.
There are evidences showing damages have already been made to science education, as schools and teachers with religious background unscrupulously teach Creationism and Intelligent Design during science classes. Education Bureau, as stated in its vision statement, is responsible for providing quality education to our next generation; it must address this problem seriously and with urgency, and clearly expresses their position publicly, to prevent this problem from further spoiling Hong Kong’s international image.
To know more about the issue or to support us, please visit our website.
Currently Evolution is on a higher level than Creationism in schools nation wide. Both Darwinism and Creationism is a theory, yet evolution is a dominate course in schools. Although millions believe in Creationism, they are forced to learn about Evolution because it is "Scientific." Yes, religion and State are separate, but if that's so then make evolution equal to creationism because evolution contradicts creationism.
The goal of this petition is to allow creationism to be taught alongside evolution in the public schools of Broward County. I am writing this petition not because I am an advocate for religious freedom in public schools, but because I am an advocate for all that is fair and just, and for allowing students to be taught "how to think, not what to think."
In August of 2005, President Bush made the following statement to Texas newspaper reporters in a group interview at the White House regarding whether or not creationism should be taught in public schools: "Both sides ought to be properly taught . . . so people can understand what the debate is about...part of education is to expose people to different schools of thought. . . . You're asking me whether or not people ought to be exposed to different ideas, and the answer is yes."
I contend that creationism should be taught alongside evolution in the public schools of Broward County. There is no legitimate excuse for not allowing both scientific theories to be discussed in the classrooms. It is only fair and just to present both sides of the argument. Teaching creation science is not about defending religious liberties because creationism is not a religion, it is a scientific theory. In fact, there are a large portion of scientists with impressive credentials, past and present, who have accepted creationism and intelligent design, including Gerald E. Aardsma, Louis Agassiz, Alexander Arndt, Steven A. Austin, Charles Babbage, and the list goes on and on.
Science Digest reported:
"Scientists who utterly reject Evolution may be one of our fastest-growing controversial minorities… Many of the scientists supporting this position hold impressive credentials in science."
So, with the evidence I have provided, the argument that evolution should be the only theory taught in public schools because it is the only theory accepted by "real" scientists is, to say the least, a weak one.
As I have stated previously, I do not want to bring religion into the public school system, I am merely trying to let creationism be taught as a "competing scientific theory."
If you want fairness restored into the classroom, and you want to fight for your academic freedom, and you want to be shown both sides of the argument for how life began, then sign the petition and fight for what's right!