Tuesday, 11 January 2011

Latest UK Creationist Ploy: The World Around Us

The latest attempts to get creationism and intelligent design into UK science classes surfaced during Michael Behe's recent UK tour.

The web site "The World Around Us" (WAU) has already been promoted to all UK schools through a mass email campaign last year.

Here is a taste of the spin;
A teacher and student resource, it can be found at www.worldaroundus.org.uk. Its objective is to stimulate students’ curiosity and encourage them to consider alternative explanations based on recently published evidence from scientific and historical journals. The site also considers the strengths and weaknesses of the scientific method, including the influence that different world-views can have in interpreting scientific evidence. Dealing with topics that often make the news headlines, the site is provocatively subtitled “towards a post-Darwinian view” but it does not draw conclusions.
It is extremely misleading, to say the least, not to point out to students and teachers that the material on the site in fact goes against the stated guidelines for science teachers and that the new education secretary also recently confirmed that creationism and ID are not suitable for use in schools as they have no scientific foundation.

Genesis (spot the clue in the name) Aggendum even managed to get themselves reported in the TES for Scotland (web and printed editions) without any mention of the creationist nature of the material - great journalism!

Look out for Holocaust denial resources suitable for History teachers and students in next weeks TES and Flat Earth Society materials suitable for Geography teachers and students the week after!

We are reliably informed by BCSE members and contacts who attended several of Behe's meetings that the WAU web site was recommended as "promoting the secular evidence for creation" and that "it was particularly useful for children to raise questions about in science classes".

Professor Paul S. Braterman, MA, DPhil, DSc has produced a complete analysis of the site from the point of view of science and current education policy which we have previously featured on this blog.

We are pleased to make this article, together with the extensive appendix listing the specific problems with the claims made, freely available as a downloadable resource for parents, teachers and students alike.

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