UK bans teaching of creationism in any school that receives public funding

By Scott Kaufman
Friday, June 20, 2014 14:58 EDT
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A boy inspects the teeth of a dinosaur at an exhibition in Melbourne on May 29, 2008. (AFP)
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On Thursday, the United Kingdom expanded its ban on the teaching of creationism from all state schools, to all state schools as well as semi-private Free Schools and Academies.

The decision effectively means that no school in the United Kingdom can teach creationism or any other “anti-scientific” dogma without losing the entirety of its funding, as they would be violating “the requirement on every academy and free school to provide a broad and balanced curriculum.”

According to a press release from the British Humanist Association (BHA), the new rules “explicitly require that pupils are taught about the theory of evolution, and prevent academy trusts from teaching ‘creationism’ as scientific fact.”

Not even Intelligent Design — the favored faux-scientific theory of American creationists who wish to import biblical beliefs into public school classrooms — can be taught, as “creationism” is defined by the new rule as “any doctrine or theory which holds that natural biological processes cannot account for the history, diversity, and complexity of life on earth and therefore rejects the scientific theory of evolution.”

As BHA Faith Schools Campaigner Richy Thompson noted, the reason behind this change was that “every young person is entitled to a high quality, broad and balanced education. This includes in biology, where evolution is a central topic and is vital to understanding how human life came to be. On the other hand, ideas such as young earth creationism should not be taught as scientifically valid for the very simple reason that they are not.”

[Image via AFP]

Scott Kaufman
Scott Kaufman
Scott Eric Kaufman is the proprietor of the AV Club's Internet Film School and, in addition to Raw Story, also writes for Lawyers, Guns & Money. He earned a Ph.D. in English Literature from the University of California, Irvine in 2008.
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