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Evolution in a new PRRI survey

Believers, Sympathizers, & Skeptics cover

Attitudes toward evolution and the compatibility of science and religion were addressed in a new survey (PDF) from the Public Religion Research Institute (which, as NCSE previously reported, was mainly focused on climate change).  Presented with "Evolution is the best explanation for the origins of human life on earth," 24% of respondents completely agreed, 29% mostly agreed, 14% mostly disagreed, and 27% completely disagreed, with 5% of respondents saying that they didn't know or refusing to answer.

Creationist legislation in Brazil

Map of Brazil with flag, via Wikimedia CommonsA bill introduced in the Brazilian Chamber of Deputies would, if enacted, require creationism to be taught in the country's public and private schools.

Opposition to new science standards in South Dakota?

A South Dakota state senator dislikes a proposed new set of state science standards, according to the Sioux Falls Argus Leader (November 18, 2014). At a November 17, 2014, public hearing — the second of four — on the standards, Phil Jensen (R-District 33) expressed concern about the treatment of evolution and climate change.

Update from Scotland

Flag-map of Scotland via Wikimedia Commons

The Public Petitions Committee of the Scottish Parliament heard testimony supporting the proposed ban on teaching creationism as scientifically credible in Scotland's public schools on November 11, 2014, according to the Press Association (November 11, 2014). The committee agreed to write to the Scottish government, the Educational Institute of Scotland, the Scottish Secondary Teachers' Association and the Association of Headteachers and Deputes in Scotland to receive their views on the matter.

Ohio's antiscience bill progresses

Ohio's House Bill 597 — which if enacted would require students in the state's public schools to "review, in an objective manner, the scientific strengths and weaknesses of existing scientific theories in the [state science] standards" — was passed on a 7-2 vote by the House Rules and Reference committee on November 5, 2014, according to the Cleveland Plain Dealer (November 5, 2014).

 

Banning creationism in Scottish schools?

Flag-map of Scotland via Wikimedia Commons

A petition calling on the Scottish government to ban creationism from Scottish public schools is to receive a hearing in the Scottish parliament on November 11, 2014. Filed on behalf of the Scottish Secular Society, the petition asks (PDF) the parliament "to bar the presentation in Scottish publicly funded schools of separate creation and of Young Earth doctrines as viable alternatives to the established science of evolution, common descent, and deep time," adding, "Nothing in this request precludes the discussion of such doctrines in their proper place, as part of the study of ideas, neither does it nor can it infringe on individual freedom of belief."

Poll data on evolution and climate change

The Chapman University Survey on American Fears included a pair of questions relevant to evolution and climate change.

Over at last for Freshwater

On October 6, 2014, the Supreme Court of the United States declined (PDF, p. 10), without comment, to hear John Freshwater's appeal of the Ohio Supreme Court's decision to uphold his termination as a middle school teacher. The decision brings the long and complicated controversy over Freshwater's inappropriate religious behavior in the classroom — including teaching creationism and misrepresenting evolution as scientifically controversial — to a final conclusion.

Ohio's antiscience bill unimproved

Ohio's House Bill 597 is still a threat to the integrity of science education in the Buckeye State, NCSE's Glenn Branch told Ohio Public Radio (September 8, 2014). 

Ohio out of the frying pan

The antiscience provision was removed from Ohio's House Bill 597 by the House Rules and Reference Committee on September 4, 2014 — only to be replaced by a provision requiring students to "review, in an objective manner, the scientific strengths and weaknesses of existing scientific theories in the standards."

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