All that bluster about mandating intelligent design creationism was much ado about nothing, I guess. Today, Senator Stephen Wise filed SB 2396:
Educational Instruction; Requires that the instructional staff of aÂ public school teach a thorough presentation and critical analysis of theÂ scientific theory of evolution and certain governmental, legal, andÂ civic-related principles.
Intersting strategy. First of all, Wise is asking that a current law be modified. That law says:
Members of the instructional staff of the public schools, subject to the rules of the State Board of Education and the district school board, shall teach efficiently and faithfully, using the books and materials required to that meet the highest standards for professionalism and historic accuracy, following the prescribed courses of study, and employing approved methods of instruction, the following:
There is a long list of specific subjects that follow, such as the Declaration of Independence, flag education, history of the Holocaust, health education, study of Hispanic contributions to the United States, etc. Wise wants the following inserted right at the top of that list:
A thorough presentation and critical analysis of the scientific theory of evolution.
He also wants inserted a little further down the following:
The historical context in which the Declaration of Independence was drafted and signed; the purposes, functions, and limitations of the legislative, executive, and judicial branches of the federal, state, and local governments; the significance of common law, state and federal constitutional law, statutory law, procedural law, and local ordinances or codes; an understanding of important legal principles, including the rule of law, stare decisis, and the federal supremacy clause; and the duties that all citizens share in order to know and protect the rule of law.
So, what he has done here is coupled “critical analysis” of evolution with civics education in one bill.