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The Critic's Resource on AntiEvolution

NCSE Evolution and Climate Education Update for 2018/09/28

(by NCSE Deputy Director Glenn Branch)

Dear friends of NCSE,


"Parents and teachers on Monday [September 24, 2018] rallied outside
an Arizona Board of Education meeting, and then took turns during the
meeting blasting a proposal to remove references to evolution and
climate change from state science standards," reported the Arizona
Republic(September 24, 2018).

The criticisms of the draft standards were prefigured by a letter
(PDF) from the American Institute of Biological Sciences, a statement
from leading Arizona scientists published in the Arizona Republic
(September 24, 2018), and a petition from the Sierra Club's Climate
Parents, signed by hundreds of Arizona parents.

Interviewed by the Arizona Republic (September 22, 2018), NCSE's Glenn
Branch emphasized the significance of the deletion of a middle-school
standard addressing speciation: "What [creationists] don't like is
[explanations of] the origin of a new species, because it implies that
human beings share a common ancestry with other living things."

At the meeting, the Arizona Science Teachers Association requested a
set of specific changes to the draft standards to rectify their faulty
treatment of evolution and climate change. Sara Torres, ASTA's
executive director, asked the board not to put science teachers "in
the position of teaching non-scientific teaching," the Arizona
Republic reported.

Meanwhile, as KNAU (September 21, 2018) previously reported,
Superintendent Diane Douglas was putting her weight behind a charter
school scope-and-sequence document developed by Hillsdale College
rather than the standards developed by her department. The proposal
"drew another round of outrage" at the rally, according to the Arizona

As expected, the board of education took no action with regard to
either the draft standards or the scope-and-sequence document at the
meeting. Video of the meeting is available on-line. The board is
currently expected to vote on the draft standards -- or a revised
version -- at its October 22, 2018, meeting.

For the Arizona Republic's 9/24 story, visit: 

For the letter from AIBS (PDF), visit: 

For the op-ed from Arizona scientists, visit: 

For a press release about the Sierra Club's Climate Parents petition, visit: 

For the Arizona Republic's 9/22 story, visit: 

For ASTA's letter to the board, visit: 

For KNAU's story, visit: 

For video from the board's 9/24 meeting, visit: 

And for NCSE's previous coverage of events in Arizona, visit: 

Thanks for reading. And don't forget to visit NCSE's website -- -- where you can always find the latest news on 
evolution and climate education and threats to them.


Glenn Branch
Deputy Director
National Center for Science Education, Inc.
1904 Franklin Street, Suite 600
Oakland CA 94612-2922
fax 510-788-7971 

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