creationism

Australia to Start Teaching Idiocy and Dumbfuckery

Intelligent design to be taught in Queensland schools under national curriculum

CREATIONISM and intelligent design will be taught in Queensland state schools for the first time as part of the new national curriculum.

Creationists dismiss the science of evolution, instead believing that living things are best explained by an intelligent being or God, rather than an undirected process such as natural selection.

The issue of creationism being taught in schools has caused huge controversy in the US, where some fundamentalist religious schools teach it as a science subject instead of Darwin’s theory of evolution.

In Queensland schools, creationism will be offered for discussion in the subject of ancient history, under the topic of “controversies”.

Teachers are still formulating a response to the draft national curriculum, scheduled to be introduced next year.

Queensland History Teachers’ Association head Kay Bishop said the curriculum asked students to develop their historical skills in an “investigation of a controversial issue” such as “human origins (eg, Darwin’s theory of evolution and its critics”).

“It’s opening up opportunities for debate and discussion, not to push a particular view,” Ms Bishop said. Classroom debate about issues encouraged critical thinking – an important tool, she said.

Associated Christian Schools executive officer Lynne Doneley welcomed the draft curriculum, saying it cemented the position of a faith-based approach to teaching.

“We talk to students from a faith science basis, but we’re not biased in the delivery of curriculum,” Mrs Doneley said. “We say, ‘This is where we’re coming from’ but allow students to make up their own minds.”

But Griffith University humanities lecturer Paul Williams said it was important to be cautious about such content.

“It’s important that education authorities are vigilant that this is not a blank cheque to push theological barrows,” Mr Williams said.

“I would be loath to see it taught as theory.

“It’s up there with the world being occupied by aliens since Roswell.”

Ms Bishop said there were bigger problems with the national curriculum.

History teachers are planning to object to repetitive subject matter, such as World War I being a major part of the Year 10 course and repeated in Year 11.

Culture minister calls for creationism displays

Culture minister calls for creationism displays

NORTHERN Ireland’s Culture Minister has called on the local Ulster Museum to put on exhibits reflecting the view that the world was made by God only several thousand years ago.

Nelson McCausland, a born-again Christian who believes that Ulster Protestants are one of the lost tribes of Israel, has written to the museum’s board of trustees urging them to reflect creationist and intelligent design theories of the universe’s origins.

The minister, a member of the Democratic Unionist Party, said the inclusion of anti-Darwinian theories in the museum was ”a human rights issue”.

Mr McCausland defended a letter he wrote to the trustees calling for anti-evolution exhibitions at the museum. He claimed around one-third of Northern Ireland’s population believed either in intelligent design or that the universe was created about 6000 years ago.

Mr McCausland denied he was trying to dictate the content of material on the origins of life to the Ulster Museum, saying he was merely calling for the museum to reflect the diversity of views on how the universe was created within the province.

His call was condemned by evolutionary biologist Professor Richard Dawkins. ”If the museum was to go down that road then perhaps they should bring in the stork theory of where babies come from. Or perhaps the museum should introduce the flat Earth theory.”

Mr McCausland’s party colleague and member of the Northern Ireland Assembly for North Antrim, Mervyn Storey, has been at the forefront of a campaign to force museums in Northern Ireland to promote anti-Darwinian theories.

Mr Storey, who has chaired the Northern Ireland Assembly’s education committee, believes in the theory that the world was created several thousand years ago, even though the most famous attraction in his constituency – the Giant’s Causeway – is, according to geological evidence, millions of years old.

Last year Mr Storey objected to notices at the causeway stating that the rock formation was about 550 million years old.

The belief that the Earth was divinely created in 4004 BC originates with the writings of another Ulster-based Protestant, Archbishop of Armagh James Ussher, in 1654.

Board Opts to Fire Teacher After He Burned Crosses in the Arms of Students

Board opts to fire teacher

MOUNT VERNON, Ohio — Supporters of John Freshwater stood in a parking lot yesterday asking God to inspire the school board to make the right decision.

Three hours later, the board announced that it intends to fire Freshwater, an eighth-grade science teacher.

Freshwater preached his Christian beliefs about how the world began, discredited evolution and didn’t teach the required science curriculum, the board says. He was told to stop teaching creationism and intelligent design, but he continued to do so, an investigation found.

“We’re all Christian people. … But rules are rules. You just can’t do that in a public school,” said Karen McClure, a Mount Vernon resident who was at yesterday’s meeting to support her daughter, school board member Jolene Goetzman.

McClure was one of about 60 people at the meeting in the Mount Vernon Middle School library. Most were Freshwater supporters.

Freshwater burned crosses onto the arms of some of his students and told them that gays are sinners, the school board said in a resolution the five members passed unanimously yesterday after meeting privately to discuss the results of an investigation.

Freshwater’s actions became public in April after he refused to remove a Bible from his desk. Yesterday, his attorney, R. Kelly Hamilton, focused on the Bible in characterizing Freshwater as a victim who’s being denied his Constitutional right to practice his beliefs.

“They have to tear him up, beat him up, to distract from the issue of the Bible on the desk,” Hamilton said.

Freshwater will request a hearing before the school board to contest the firing, Hamilton said.

After learning of the board’s decision, Freshwater called the consultants’ report half-truths and said he never veered from the state standards for teaching science.

High-school science teachers told consultants that Freshwater’s teachings were undermining science instruction in the district. They reported having to re-teach scientific concepts to students who took Freshwater’s class.

Complaints about Freshwater’s teachings were made by teachers and people in the community for at least 11 years, a school administrator told consultants. Freshwater has taught eighth-grade science in the district for 21 years.

In April, the school board hired HR On Call Inc. to investigate Freshwater, four months after the parents of a child in his class said he had burned a cross into the child’s arm, causing swelling and blistering.

Hamilton called the complaints “fabrications created by a couple of students. … Not a single child has ever been harmed,” he said.

The family of the boy filed a lawsuit last week against Freshwater and district officials, claiming the boy’s civil rights were violated.

The branding was done with a machine used to show characteristics of gases.

In Mount Vernon, the public debate over Freshwater is reflected in signs on the road, one saying that if the school board made Freshwater remove his Bible from his classroom, the community would get rid of the school board.

“It saddens us that we’re at this point,” said Mary Lou Sinzinger, a Freshwater supporter. “This God-fearing community is one of the reasons we moved here.”