News FocusScience Education

Climate Change Sparks Battles in Classroom

Science  05 Aug 2011:
Vol. 333, Issue 6043, pp. 688-689
DOI: 10.1126/science.333.6043.688

You are currently viewing the summary.

View Full Text

Via your Institution

Log in through your institution

Log in through your institution


This article has a correction. Please see:

Summary

An informal survey this spring of 800 members of the National Earth Science Teachers Association (NESTA) found that climate change was second only to evolution in triggering protests from parents and school administrators. Online message boards for science teachers tell similar tales. Unlike biology teachers defending the teaching of evolution, however, earth science teachers don't have the protection of the First Amendment's language about religion. But the teachers feel their arguments are equally compelling: Science courses should reflect the best scientific knowledge of the day, and offering opposing views amounts to teaching poor science. Most science teachers don't relish having to engage this latest threat to their profession and resent devoting precious classroom time to a discussion of an alleged "controversy." And they believe that politics has no place in a science classroom. Even so, some are being dragged against their will into a conflict they fear could turn ugly.