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After a long and contentious wrangle, the Florida state board of education voted 4-3 at its February 19, 2008, meeting to adopt a new set of state science standards in which evolution is presented as a "fundamental concept underlying all of biology." But now there are concerns that, due to a recent state law, the standards will have to be approved again.
"A Teacher on the Front Line as Faith and Science Clash" -- a story on the front page of The New York Times (August 24, 2008) -- examines the creationism/evolution controversy as it plays out in the classroom of David Campbell, a biology teacher in Orange Park, Florida.
When the Florida legislature ended its session on May 2, 2008, legislative attempts to open the door to creationism died in the House of Representatives.
With drastically different House and Senate versions of what was once the same antievolution bill in the Florida state legislature, it remains uncertain whether antievolution forces will be able to devise a compromise bill to be sent to the governor before the legislature adjourns on May 2, 2008 -- especially with a host of other issues crowding the legislative calendar.
The antievolution bills — the so-called Academic Freedom Acts — in Florida are progressing, despite protests from teachers, scientists, and the Florida ACLU, and despite the criticisms of the legislature's own staff.
The antievolution bills recently introduced in the Florida legislature continue to elicit opposition. The bills closely resemble a string of similar bills in Alabama – HB 391 and SB 336 in 2004; HB 352, SB 240, and HB 716 in 2005; HB 106 and SB 45 in 2006 – as well as a model bill that the Discovery Institute's Center for Science and Culture, the institutional home of "intelligent design" creationism, recently began to promote.
The Florida state board of education's vote to adopt a new set of science standards on February 19, 2008, is continuing to attract comment, due largely to the board's decision to adopt, not the final draft of the standards as submitted by the writing committee, but a revised version in which the phrase "the scientific theory of" was inserted before mentions of plate tectonics, cell theory, atomic theory, electromagnetism, the Big Bang – and evolution.
The Florida state board of education voted 4-3 at its February 19, 2008, meeting to adopt a new set of state science standards in which evolution is presented as a "fundamental concept underlying all of biology." The adopted standards differ from those developed by the writing committee in adding the phrase "the scientific theory of" before mentions of plate tectonics, cell theory, atomic theory, electromagnetism, and evolution. According to the standards, "a scientific theory represents the most powerful explanation scientists have to offer."