Vacation creationism bill dies in Kentucky

04.18.2016

Kentucky's Senate Bill 50 (PDF) died in the House Education Committee when the legislature adjourned on April 15, 2016. The bill would have extended the duration of summer vacation in the state's public schools in order to boost tourism — including to a creationist attraction. 

A sponsor of the bill explicitly referred to the benefits to Ark Encounter, a Noah's-ark-themed attraction — now scheduled to open on July 7, 2016 — operated by the young-earth creationist ministry Answers in Genesis, which also operates a "museum" in Kentucky.

As NCSE previously reported, educators in Kentucky have reportedly been cool to the idea of the state requiring local schools to start later in the year, citing both the ideal of local control of education and the danger of impairing student learning. 

The bill passed the Senate Education Committee (which revised it somewhat), the Senate Rules Committee (which also revised it somewhat), and the Senate, on a 33-4 vote, but ultimately stalled in the House Education Committee.