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  Topic: Good News From Texas< Next Oldest | Next Newest >  
Dr.GH



Posts: 1969
Joined: May 2002

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 05 2008,09:37   

Dallas News,  AUSTIN – Veteran State Board of Education member Pat Hardy of Fort Worth was defeating a challenger in the GOP primary Tuesday night, holding off an effort by social conservatives to gain a working majority on the politically divided board.  



The board currently has 10 Republicans – including seven social conservatives who frequently vote together – and five Democrats. Seven members are up for election this year, but the only primary races are in District 11 (Ms. Hardy's seat) and District 2 in South Texas. In the latter contest, incumbent Mary Helen Berlanga, D-Corpus Christi, easily defeated a challenger in the Democratic primary who also supported creation science as a better explanation of the origin of man than Charles Darwin's theory of evolution.

Edited by Dr.GH on Mar. 05 2008,07:40

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"Science is the horse that pulls the cart of philosophy."

L. Susskind, 2004 "SMOLIN VS. SUSSKIND: THE ANTHROPIC PRINCIPLE"

   
J-Dog



Posts: 4369
Joined: Dec. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 05 2008,13:28   

Absolutely Yee-Hah!  I am sure DaveScot is cuttin' a rug as we post.

This is quietly perhaps the best news on fighting the anti-science tards since Dover.  If this goes the other way, TX could cause all the other states buying textbooks to have the science sections reduced to goddidit.

Thew only downside is that we are all deprived of having the fun of watching the DI shoot itself in the collective nuts again ala Dover.

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Come on Tough Guy, do the little dance of ID impotence you do so well. - Louis to Joe G 2/10

Gullibility is not a virtue - Quidam on Dembski's belief in the Bible Code Faith Healers & ID 7/08

UD is an Unnatural Douchemagnet. - richardthughes 7/11

  
blipey



Posts: 2061
Joined: June 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 05 2008,13:46   

J-Dog touched on something that is important, but not in the spotlight, regarding the IDC movement in public schools.

Textbooks publishers are in business like anyone else and they take their cues from a relatively small number of districts.  The high population states of Texas, California, and New York have a disproportionate (as regards total number of school districts) influence on what textbooks get used, and therefore which ones get published.

These states maybe need a little more attention paid to them.

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But I get the trick question- there isn't any such thing as one molecule of water. -JoeG

And scientists rarely test theories. -Gary Gaulin

   
Lou FCD



Posts: 5379
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 05 2008,14:23   

Quote (blipey @ Mar. 05 2008,14:46)
J-Dog touched on something that is important, but not in the spotlight, regarding the IDC movement in public schools.

Textbooks publishers are in business like anyone else and they take their cues from a relatively small number of districts.  The high population states of Texas, California, and New York have a disproportionate (as regards total number of school districts) influence on what textbooks get used, and therefore which ones get published.

These states maybe need a little more attention paid to them.

Florida as well.

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Lou FCD is still in school, so we should only count him as a baby biologist. -carlsonjok -deprecated
I think I might love you. Don't tell Deadman -Wolfhound

Work-friendly photography
NSFW photography

   
Patrickarbuthnot



Posts: 21
Joined: Feb. 2010

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2010,00:38   

Quote (blipey @ Mar. 05 2008,13:46)
J-Dog touched on something that is important, but not in the spotlight, regarding the IDC movement in public schools.

Textbooks publishers are in business like anyone else and they take their cues from a relatively small number of districts.  The high population states of Texas, California, and New York have a disproportionate (as regards total number of school districts) influence on what textbooks get used, and therefore which ones get published.

These states maybe need a little more attention paid to them.

I will repeat my convictions. To teach with textbooks does a disservice to the student.

--------------
Thomas Edison said: “The doctor of the future will give no medicine, but will interest her or his patients in the care of the human frame, in a proper diet, and in the cause and prevention of disease.”

  
Wesley R. Elsberry



Posts: 4522
Joined: May 2002

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2010,05:30   

Quote (Patrickarbuthnot @ Feb. 27 2010,00:38)
 
Quote (blipey @ Mar. 05 2008,13:46)
J-Dog touched on something that is important, but not in the spotlight, regarding the IDC movement in public schools.

Textbooks publishers are in business like anyone else and they take their cues from a relatively small number of districts.  The high population states of Texas, California, and New York have a disproportionate (as regards total number of school districts) influence on what textbooks get used, and therefore which ones get published.

These states maybe need a little more attention paid to them.

I will repeat my convictions. To teach with textbooks does a disservice to the student.

Teaching subjects badly is a disservice to the student.

Teaching from a textbook may be relatively worse than having someone who knows the subject well put together an engaging curriculum tailored to the grade level(s) to be taught.

What we get to argue over is just how badly we are willing for subjects to be taught.

There is the old one about what to call your kid's biology teacher if you haven't been introduced before... the answer is, "Coach".

In all too many places, schools are quite willing to have subjects taught by teachers who have no background in that subject at all. Asking those folks to present biology to students without the aid of a textbook is a recipe for certain disaster. So while in an ideal world where we would dig into our pockets and pay up to have our students taught by people who have earned their clues in the actual discipline being taught, textbooks might be sniffled at as stifling messengers of mediocrity, the fact is that we live in a world where skinflints will happily pay teachers on a scale lower than waste removal people if they can, and thus attract a workforce sometimes worthy of their compensation.

Or did I miss a different concern about textbooks that you have stated elsewhere?

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"You can't teach an old dogma new tricks." - Dorothy Parker

    
OgreMkV



Posts: 3350
Joined: Oct. 2009

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2010,08:01   

In my old school, I had the highest TAKS (state mandated standardized test) rating in Biology at 33% of my students passed (yes, only 33% passed).  The two coaches in our department averaged single digit pass rates (one at 8% and one at 7%).  

They are still there while I moved on.  

Of course it was kind of hard to do anything but teach from the book when I was in a portable building with no heat, no AC, no water, no electricity (except for lights) and a 2 foot by 2 foot blackboard.  Oh, and only a class set of books.

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Ignored by those who can't provide evidence for their claims.

http://skepticink.com/smilodo....retreat

   
Richard Simons



Posts: 425
Joined: Oct. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2010,09:04   

Quote (Wesley R. Elsberry @ Feb. 27 2010,05:30)
There is the old one about what to call your kid's biology teacher if you haven't been introduced before... the answer is, "Coach".

My wife (who published in endocrinology before getting her education degree) was teaching high school science and English in Manitoba. She applied for a position to teach the exact same combination in a town 400 miles closer to our house but was not even short-listed. When she asked why, they said 'Oh, we wanted someone with a stronger sports background'. She hadn't thought to mention that she had shown the kids in the school how to hurdle, and beaten every one of them.

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All sweeping statements are wrong.

  
midwifetoad



Posts: 3607
Joined: Mar. 2008

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2010,13:05   

Quote
Teaching from a textbook may be relatively worse than having someone who knows the subject well put together an engaging curriculum tailored to the grade level(s) to be taught.


My son's advanced biology teacher put his own textbook together, handing out pages at a time. Most of his students got 4s and 5s on the AP tests.

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”let’s not make a joke of ourselves.”

Pat Robertson

  
lkeithlu



Posts: 321
Joined: Feb. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 27 2010,17:37   

Been teaching text-less for a couple of years now. I love it!

Hey-off topic, but I've been away. I can't seem to wish anyone a happy birfday because there isn't always a "reply" button.  (though obviously I still have my edit button, of which I am proud) Could it be my geriatric computer?

  
Patrickarbuthnot



Posts: 21
Joined: Feb. 2010

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 04 2010,05:29   

Quote (Wesley R. Elsberry @ Feb. 27 2010,05:30)
Quote (Patrickarbuthnot @ Feb. 27 2010,00:38)
 
Quote (blipey @ Mar. 05 2008,13:46)
J-Dog touched on something that is important, but not in the spotlight, regarding the IDC movement in public schools.

Textbooks publishers are in business like anyone else and they take their cues from a relatively small number of districts.  The high population states of Texas, California, and New York have a disproportionate (as regards total number of school districts) influence on what textbooks get used, and therefore which ones get published.

These states maybe need a little more attention paid to them.

I will repeat my convictions. To teach with textbooks does a disservice to the student.

Teaching subjects badly is a disservice to the student.

Teaching from a textbook may be relatively worse than having someone who knows the subject well put together an engaging curriculum tailored to the grade level(s) to be taught.

What we get to argue over is just how badly we are willing for subjects to be taught.

There is the old one about what to call your kid's biology teacher if you haven't been introduced before... the answer is, "Coach".

In all too many places, schools are quite willing to have subjects taught by teachers who have no background in that subject at all. Asking those folks to present biology to students without the aid of a textbook is a recipe for certain disaster. So while in an ideal world where we would dig into our pockets and pay up to have our students taught by people who have earned their clues in the actual discipline being taught, textbooks might be sniffled at as stifling messengers of mediocrity, the fact is that we live in a world where skinflints will happily pay teachers on a scale lower than waste removal people if they can, and thus attract a workforce sometimes worthy of their compensation.

Or did I miss a different concern about textbooks that you have stated elsewhere?

Forgive me I missed this post. I agree with you entirely,  except I would add  the outdated employment practice called “teacher tenure”. Keeping incompetent, troubled, and burnt-out teachers in the system, while keeping out people who are actually committed to educating children is appalling to me.
 Yet we do it. I would like to see the day were children could be in a classroom and openly debate on many subjects with a proficient teacher. I think it would sharpen there critical thinking capability and enforce what they have learned. I don't know your views on this but it was a successful model in the past.

--------------
Thomas Edison said: “The doctor of the future will give no medicine, but will interest her or his patients in the care of the human frame, in a proper diet, and in the cause and prevention of disease.”

  
midwifetoad



Posts: 3607
Joined: Mar. 2008

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 04 2010,08:48   

Quote
Yet we do it. I would like to see the day were children could be in a classroom and openly debate on many subjects with a proficient teacher. I think it would sharpen there critical thinking capability and enforce what they have learned. I don't know your views on this but it was a successful model in the past.
I'm trying to figure out when this utopia existed. It certainly didn't exist in 1950, when I started school, not in 1915, when my parents started school.

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”let’s not make a joke of ourselves.”

Pat Robertson

  
fnxtr



Posts: 2163
Joined: June 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 04 2010,10:19   

Quote (midwifetoad @ Mar. 04 2010,06:48)
Quote
Yet we do it. I would like to see the day were children could be in a classroom and openly debate on many subjects with a proficient teacher. I think it would sharpen there critical thinking capability and enforce what they have learned. I don't know your views on this but it was a successful model in the past.
I'm trying to figure out when this utopia existed. It certainly didn't exist in 1950, when I started school, not in 1915, when my parents started school.

This happened in my Eng. 12 class (1978), but not in intro calculus (uh... several years later).

Mr. Wagner was all about getting kids excited about thinking about things.  Skewed the bell curve.

Dr. Bullen (tenured? Probably but not certainly) droned monotonously from the book his colleague had written (clumsily) that same year. Lots of us failed that course.

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"But it's disturbing to think someone actually thinks creationism -- having put it's hand on the hot stove every day for the last 400 years -- will get a different result tomorrow." -- midwifetoad

  
BWE



Posts: 1896
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 04 2010,11:00   

Quote (lkeithlu @ Feb. 27 2010,15:37)
Been teaching text-less for a couple of years now. I love it!

Hey-off topic, but I've been away. I can't seem to wish anyone a happy birfday because there isn't always a "reply" button.  (though obviously I still have my edit button, of which I am proud) Could it be my geriatric computer?

My wife teaches textless too. Today she begins electricity.

I spent last weekend building Farraday's lab. By the end of the unit they will be able to calculate amps, volts, watts etc. plus build a mini power plant and elctromagnet etc...

It takes a bit of effort to not teach by the book. She does a 3 year curriculum though which does make it a bit harder.

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Who said that ev'ry wish would be heard and answered
When wished on the morning star
Somebody thought of that, and someone believed it
Look what it's done so far

The Daily Wingnut

   
midwifetoad



Posts: 3607
Joined: Mar. 2008

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 04 2010,11:32   

All the problems of education could be solved by an endless supply of warm fuzzy, competent, engaged teachers, and parents who give a damn.

I know this because my daughter went through an IB program in a school located in a minority neighborhood, where most of the students and classes were regular issue.

The IB program, about ten percent of the total student body, transformed the entire school, making it more like a college campus.

Not just a superficial observation. I subbed there for three months.

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”let’s not make a joke of ourselves.”

Pat Robertson

  
Robert Byers



Posts: 160
Joined: Nov. 2009

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 05 2010,00:42   

I am Canadian.
Is this what education has come too? Fighting about trustees beliefs and agendas on origin issues? is there something unAmerican about stopping free speech and investigation on the great issues of origins?
Surely equal time will show to the students the merits of both sides.
What is the evolution side afraid of? Defeat.!

All this shows is the future in america. The issue of origins will likely become a issue in all elections just like other general contentions.
The origin wars in Texas will become a general melee in the land.

It all comes down to the fact that the schools belong to the American people.
They have full rights to have discussed in their schools the historic and commonly held beliefs on origin matters.
To prohibit by law this discussions is illegal.
Either because it brings in state censorship or because the state is attacking religious doctrines when it is expressly not to do so.
The remedy is simply freedom and seeing schools as not actually the state but merely financially supported.

As more of the public is involved more and more of the censorship will be held in contempt. Americans like freedom and easy going lifestyle of seeking the truth.
Creationism(s) will one day be in the science class.

  
fnxtr



Posts: 2163
Joined: June 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 05 2010,01:27   

Sorry about the Wind from the North, there.

- a sane Canadian.

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"But it's disturbing to think someone actually thinks creationism -- having put it's hand on the hot stove every day for the last 400 years -- will get a different result tomorrow." -- midwifetoad

  
Badger3k



Posts: 861
Joined: Mar. 2008

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 05 2010,09:32   

Quote (fnxtr @ Mar. 05 2010,01:27)
Sorry about the Wind from the North, there.

- a sane Canadian.

Bobby is a poster child for what a lack of education and critical thinking can lead to - as well as a blind, slavish devotion to a particular dogma.

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"Just think if every species had a different genetic code We would have to eat other humans to survive.." : Joe G

  
Henry J



Posts: 4112
Joined: Mar. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 05 2010,12:10   

Regulating what gets presented in classrooms isn't limiting investigations into issues; classrooms are not where the real investigations happen.

Classrooms are where students learn what's already known so that they become able to assist in those investigations when they become employed.

Henry

  
Robin



Posts: 1431
Joined: Sep. 2009

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 05 2010,12:36   

Quote (Robert Byers @ Mar. 05 2010,00:42)

Quote
R Byers: To prohibit by law this discussions is illegal.


Ironic POTW? You make the call.

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we IDists rule in design for the flagellum and cilium largely because they do look designed.  Bilbo

The only reason you reject Thor is because, like a cushion, you bear the imprint of the biggest arse that sat on you. Louis

  
Peter Henderson



Posts: 298
Joined: Aug. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 06 2010,05:47   

Quote
I will repeat my convictions. To teach with textbooks does a disservice to the student


Surely a student needs textbooks as a reference ?

  
lkeithlu



Posts: 321
Joined: Feb. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 06 2010,08:42   

I do keep many texts in the classroom to use as reference. I also send them to websites that I have vetted and are appropriate to their level. My complaint about texts is that they present the material in the wrong order (yes, I am that arrogant) and I prefer to cover fewer topics in depth, so I can't justify $100+ for a book that I use only a small part of. In addition, my labs are designed to suit me, my school and my students, so they are not from a lab manual. Since I have to write all of that as well, I dumped the text and merged the lab and class together. Now we do hands on/inquiry/activities daily and they all fit together.

  
lkeithlu



Posts: 321
Joined: Feb. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 06 2010,08:47   

Of course, I should have prefaced all of this by saying I work in an independent school, so the decisions are all made by me, and I don't have to teach to an exit or gateway exam. (Our school does not offer AP classes on principle, but students can and do take AP exams) I have my curriculum evaluated by local university professors and area scientists, and I am very transparent so that if there is a problem, someone can see it and point it out. I really do have the best job in the world! (And folks are lined up to take positions at my school as they become available, which as you can imagine, isn't often)

  
Richard Simons



Posts: 425
Joined: Oct. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 07 2010,10:34   

When I was teaching biology to adults, a major problem with the textbooks was that they tried to be all-inclusive. A 700 or 1000 page book is very outfacing for people who are just starting on a subject. When I skipped sections, the better students became very worried that they were getting a watered-down course.

I had no control over the selection of the texts, and a recurring problem was that all of them were organised using the 5-kingdom system of classification. They made reference to endosymbiosis and modern views on the taxonomic relationships among the major groups, then proceded to ignore this in the rest of the book. The result was very confusing for the students.

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All sweeping statements are wrong.

  
Wolfhound



Posts: 468
Joined: June 2008

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 07 2010,15:41   

Quote (fnxtr @ Mar. 05 2010,02:27)
Sorry about the Wind from the North, there.

- a sane Canadian.

*Sniff-sniff*

[I]Mmmmmmm, mmmmmmm!  Smell teh stoopid!

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I've found my personality to be an effective form of birth control.

  
Wolfhound



Posts: 468
Joined: June 2008

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 07 2010,15:44   

Quote (Wolfhound @ Mar. 07 2010,16:41)
Quote (fnxtr @ Mar. 05 2010,02:27)
Sorry about the Wind from the North, there.

- a sane Canadian.

*Sniff-sniff*

[I]Mmmmmmm, mmmmmmm!  Smell teh stoopid!

Says the moron who could not manage close the italic.    :angry:

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I've found my personality to be an effective form of birth control.

  
carlsonjok



Posts: 3324
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 07 2010,16:19   

Quote (Wolfhound @ Mar. 07 2010,15:44)
Quote (Wolfhound @ Mar. 07 2010,16:41)
 
Quote (fnxtr @ Mar. 05 2010,02:27)
Sorry about the Wind from the North, there.

- a sane Canadian.

*Sniff-sniff*

[I]Mmmmmmm, mmmmmmm!  Smell teh stoopid!

Says the moron who could not manage close the italic.    :angry:

Or click the emoticon button.  



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It's natural to be curious about our world, but the scientific method is just one theory about how to best understand it.  We live in a democracy, which means we should treat every theory equally. - Steven Colbert, I Am America (and So Can You!)

  
Henry J



Posts: 4112
Joined: Mar. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 07 2010,16:54   

5-kingdom system? I'd guess that 3 of them are the three types of multicellular species? But that leaves eukaryotes, prokaryotes and archaea, so I'm unsure what's being called a "kingdom" here. (Or are viruses stuffed in there someplace?)

Henry

  
Wolfhound



Posts: 468
Joined: June 2008

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 07 2010,19:22   

Quote (carlsonjok @ Mar. 07 2010,17:19)
Quote (Wolfhound @ Mar. 07 2010,15:44)
 
Quote (Wolfhound @ Mar. 07 2010,16:41)
   
Quote (fnxtr @ Mar. 05 2010,02:27)
Sorry about the Wind from the North, there.

- a sane Canadian.

*Sniff-sniff*

[I]Mmmmmmm, mmmmmmm!  Smell teh stoopid!

Says the moron who could not manage close the italic.    :angry:

Or click the emoticon button.  


Iz tru.  Me am retard.   :(

Me gonna eat wurmz!

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I've found my personality to be an effective form of birth control.

  
Richard Simons



Posts: 425
Joined: Oct. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 07 2010,21:21   

Quote (Henry J @ Mar. 07 2010,16:54)
5-kingdom system? I'd guess that 3 of them are the three types of multicellular species? But that leaves eukaryotes, prokaryotes and archaea, so I'm unsure what's being called a "kingdom" here. (Or are viruses stuffed in there someplace?)

Henry

The kingdoms are animals, plants, fungi, protista (single-celled organisms) and bacteria.

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All sweeping statements are wrong.

  
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