"Strengths and weaknesses" bill in North Dakota

01.15.2019

North Dakota's House Bill 1538 (PDF), which would allow the misrepresentation of science in the classroom, was filed on January 14, 2019, and referred to the House Education Committee.

The bill would ostensibly promote "the freedom to teach students the strengths and weaknesses of scientific theories and controversies" while prohibiting state and local administrators from exercising supervisory responsibility over teachers.

No scientific topics are specifically identified as controversial, although evolution and global warming have often been cited, wrongly, as controversial in similar bills elsewhere, and no guidance is provided about adjudicating disputes about which are and which are not.

The sponsors are Jeff A. Hoverson (R-District 3), Daniel Johnston (R-District 24), Kim Koppelman (R-District 13), Bob  Paulson (R-District 3), and Luke Simons (R-District 36).