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The eminent scholar Roland Mushat Frye died on January 20, 2005, at the age of 83, in Gladwyne, Pennsylvania. Born in Birmingham, Alabama, in 1922, Frye earned three degrees, including his Ph.D., from Princeton University. He served in the United States Army during World War II and was awarded the Bronze Star. After the war, he taught at Emory University and was a research professor in residence at the Folger Shakespeare Library before settling at the University of Pennsylvania, where he was the Felix E. Schelling Professor of English Literature until retiring in 1983.
On January 17, 2005, the Cobb County School Board voted 5-2 to appeal the ruling in Selman et al. v. Cobb County School District et al., which ordered the removal of evolution disclaimers from the school district's textbooks. Announcing the decision, Kathie Johnstone, chair of the board, described Judge Clarence Cooper's ruling as an "unnecessary judicial intrusion into local control of schools."
Two excellent opinion columns about evolution education appeared on January 19, 2005, on opposite sides of the country.
"Wedging creationism into the academy," by Barbara Forrest and Glenn Branch, appears in the January-February 2005 issue of Academe, the bimonthly magazine of the American Association of University Professors. In their article, Forrest and Branch discuss the attempts of the "intelligent design" movement to use academia as a base.
"[T]he Sticker adopted by the Cobb County Board of Education violates the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment," declared U.S. District Judge Clarence Cooper, in a forty-four-page ruling issued on January 13, 2005. Cooper's ruling requires the Cobb County School District to remove the disclaimers immediately and not to disseminate them again in any form. NCSE Executive Director Eugenie C. Scott commented, "This is another win for good science and good science education.