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The Critic's Resource on AntiEvolution

NCSE Evolution and Climate Education Update for 2014/12/26

(by NCSE Deputy Director Glenn Branch)

Dear friends of NCSE,

Congratulations are in order for a member of NCSE's Advisory Council.
Michigan's anti-NGSS bill is dead. And a voice for evolution from
Leeds.

CONGRATULATIONS TO PATRICIA KELLEY

NCSE is pleased to congratulate Patricia Kelley -- a professor of
geology at the University of North Carolina, Wilmington, and a member
of NCSE's Advisory Council -- on her selection as one of four
Outstanding Professors of the Year by the Carnegie Foundation for the
Advancement of Teaching. The award, launched in 1981, is the only
national initiative specifically designed to recognize excellence in
undergraduate teaching and mentoring.

According to a November 20, 2014, press release from the Carnegie
Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, "Judges said they admired
Kelley as a 'highly creative teacher' who has revitalized the study of
paleontology at her college, transformed classes to use more active
learning strategies and given students a real science experience. They
also noted her efforts to help students explore evolution in a spirit
of respect."

For the press release, visit:
http://www.carnegiefoundation.org/newsroom/news-releases/professors-recognized-best-american-higher-education/ 

ANTI-NGSS BILL DIES IN MICHIGAN

Michigan's House Bill 4972, which would, if enacted, have required
that Michigan's "model core academic curriculum standards shall not be
based on the Next Generation Science Standards," died in the House
Committee on Education when the legislature adjourned on December 19,
2014.

Although the bill's primary sponsor, Tom McMillin (R-District 45),
told the Petoskey News-Review (September 18, 2013) that he was
primarily worried about "turning over our standards to unelected
bodies," he and cosponsor Greg MacMaster (R-District 105) also
acknowledged their concern about the NGSS's inclusion of global
warming. "It does get into controversial issues such as man-made
global warming as fact,” said McMillin. "That's still somewhat
controversial."

Michigan, as one of the twenty-six states that collaborated in the
development of the NGSS, is committed to giving serious consideration
to their adoption. Michigan Radio (November 18, 2014) predicted that
the state board of education would adopt the NGSS, or a Michiganized
version thereof, perhaps as soon as December 2014.

For information about Michigan's House Bill 4972 from the legislature, visit:
http://www.legislature.mi.gov/documents/2013-2014/billintroduced/House/htm/2013-HIB-4972.htm 

For the story in the Petoskey News-Review, visit:
http://articles.petoskeynews.com/2013-09-18/next-generation-science-standards_42192403 

For the story from Michigan Radio, visit:
http://michiganradio.org/post/state-education-officials-gearing-new-science-standards 

And for NCSE's previous coverage of events in Michigan, visit:
http://ncse.com/news/michigan 

A VOICE FOR EVOLUTION FROM LEEDS

The chorus of support for the teaching of evolution continues, with a
position statement on evolution from Leeds Museums and Galleries. The
statement reads in part:

***

A significant part of the work we do in communicating ideas through
our collections is concerned with the diversity of life and the
natural world. Central to this, is the theory of evolution, which for
two hundred years has been challenged and debated and yet it endures
as the best interpretation of the evidence for the origin and
development of the diversity of life on Earth. We subscribe to the
view that rigorous science and collation of evidence tells us that the
Earth is approximately 4.56 billion years old and that life has
evolved through processes of random genetic mutation and natural
selection.

We take a firm position on the acceptance of evolution as the best
explanation of how the diversity of life on Earth came to be and it is
our policy to present evolution as such in our displays, events and
activities concerned with life on Earth.

***

The statement is now reproduced, by permission, on NCSE's website, and
will also be contained in the fourth edition of NCSE's Voices for
Evolution.

For the statement from Leeds Museums and Galleries (PDF), visit:
http://www.leeds.gov.uk/museumsandgalleries/Release%20Documents/LMG%20Evolution%20Position%20Statement%20with%20CC%20license.pdf 

And for Voices for Evolution, visit:
http://ncse.com/voices 

WHAT'S NEW FROM THE SCIENCE LEAGUE OF AMERICA

Have you been visiting NCSE's blog, The Science League of America,
recently? If not, then you've missed:

* Josh Rosenau musing about science and opinion journalism:
http://ncse.com/blog/2014/12/unexpected-journey-into-science-opinion-0016065 

* Stephanie Keep explaining the dating of fossils:
http://ncse.com/blog/2014/12/misconception-monday-how-old-is-that-fossil-window-part-1-0016032 
http://ncse.com/blog/2014/12/misconception-monday-how-old-is-that-fossil-window-part-2-0016048 
http://ncse.com/blog/2014/12/misconception-monday-how-old-is-that-fossil-window-part-3-0016059 

* Josh Rosenau and Glenn Branch celebrating the ninth anniversary of
Kitzmiller in verse:
http://ncse.com/blog/2014/12/happy-9th-kitzmas-0016054 

And much more besides!

For The Science League of America, visit:
http://ncse.com/blog 

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

--

With best wishes for the new year,

Glenn Branch
Deputy Director
National Center for Science Education, Inc.
420 40th Street, Suite 2
Oakland, CA 94609-2509
510-601-7203 x303
fax: 510-601-7204
800-290-6006
branch@ncse.com 
http://ncse.com 

Check out NCSE's new blog, Science League of America:
http://ncse.com/blog 

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http://reports.ncse.com 

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