Texas BOE: Dogma Over Science

15 03 2009

The Texas Board of Educashun (their spelling, not mine) is always innovating, always adapting, always looking for new ways to misinform its students about the process of science and instead prop up religious dogma as “gooder learnin”. If viewed in an evolutionary context, the Texas BOE is the educational outlier that thinks it won the genetic lottery because it got an extra chromosome. Um…yeah.

This “special” organization, led by dentist and avowed creationist Don McLeroy, had a busy March indeed. On March 9th they introduced House Bill 2800 which, if enacted, would effectively exempt institutions such as the Institute for Creation Research’s graduate school from Texas’s regulations governing degree-granting institutions and make every degree from Texas just that little bit less respected.

But wait, dinosaur Don and his minority of faithful on the board weren’t done yet. Always looking for innovative ways to cast unfounded doubt on well proven science, on March 13th he introduced House Bill 4224 which once again moves to force the creationist “strengths and weaknesses” language to their 6-12th grade science classes. There have been other recent attempts to pin the “strengths and weaknesses” phrase specifically to the theory of evolution so that other “theories” like creationism could be taught. Those attempts failed so they’re now trying to reintroduce the same language, just more generically this time. I personlly don’t disagree with the sentiment being introduced as applied to all of science, but as it is yet another reincarnation of a ploy used by creationists to attempt to weasel in their dogma leaves me very suspicious indeed.

I feel bad for all the genuinely intelligent people who know this is more of the same bullshit, and who have or are in the process of getting a degree of any kind from Texas. The educational bonafides of everyone with a Texas degree are tainted by these asshats, and it’s just a shame. Why everyone doing serious educational work in Texas isn’t up in arms and protesting the intellectual insult and genuine damage these fools are inflicting on their reputation and education will remain a mystery to me. Perhaps the educated people of Texas who are willing to just let this crap float by somehow deserve the diminished reputation these policies suggest.



8 responses

15 03 2009

A Texan doctorate in science will be great preperation for a life of ditch diggin or flipping hamburgers at Macdonalds.

15 03 2009
Personal Failure

At a time when signing your name got you a 400 on the SAT, the University of Texas at El Paso, UTEP, required an impressive 700 to get in. 40% of the graduating class at my high school couldn’t get into UTEP.

Made graduating valedictorian just that much more special. (Or in Texas, speshalur.)

16 03 2009

As a Texan, I am deeply embarrassed for my state. But this is what happens when you vote in laypeople to run your schools.

16 03 2009

True Story:
I am an art director. On one occasion, I sat in on an interview for a graphic designer. The girl had just graduated from a private university in Tennessee or Kentucky or some flyover state in the East. Anyways, I asked her what her major was. She said, I kid you not, “We got to pick our majors. So I chose fashion magazine design.”
I asked her thoughts on typography. She replied, “I had a professor that liked typography.”
There wasn’t a facepalm large enough to express my bewilderment.
The point of the story is this. It doesn’t matter what schools some idiots give accreditation to if the graduates don’t have the necessary knowledge to even compete in a simple job interview.

16 03 2009

I certainly would agree that there are incompetent people out there with degrees from all over. I was more trying to point out two other problems with the proposals by the Texas BOE. If those proposals go through then it is very possible that students will not be getting the best education possible. It is also an unfortunate side effect that genuinely capable and gifted students with degrees from Texas will have certifications of education that have, at least in their cases, been unjustly maligned and depreciated.

Texas Board of Educashun: Lowering standards and creating loopholes for our Christian children!

16 03 2009

I don’t know if you’ll recall, but I had removed my son from a Texas public school in favor of homeschooling, something I had previously opposed. The final straw was another matter altogether, but this kind of crap is one the things that made me swear and throw things cringe.

Well, we’re not in Kansas Texas anymore! The boy is back in school and things are much better so far. We’re sharing a state with the highly esteemed PZ Meyers, so it must be good. 😉

The educational bonafides of everyone with a Texas degree are tainted by these asshats, and it’s just a shame.

A crying shame…

16 03 2009

I do recall, and it’s nice to see you back Lottie. I’m glad things are settling down nicely for you. Hopefully you’ll have two Senators soon (preferably one with a professional grade sense of humor).

Don’t be a stranger. 🙂

17 03 2009

Thanks, SJ!

Yeah, I’m keeping an eye on the Senate race here. Boy oh boy, it just keeps dragging on, doesn’t it?

Yes, I want the funny man. 😉

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