Associated Press Story Accurately Presents Debate over Louisiana Science Education Act
The first Associated Press story is out about the passage of the Louisiana Science Education Act by Louisiana's House of Representatives, and I'm pleased to say that it supplies an accurate description of the arguments both for and against the bill. That may not seem like a big deal, but when it comes to major media coverage of the evolution issue, it is. The beginning of the story states:
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) -- A proposal that would let science teachers change how they teach topics like evolution, cloning and global warming in public schools was overwhelmingly approved Wednesday by the Louisiana House.
The bill by Sen. Ben Nevers, D-Bogalusa, would let teachers supplement school science textbooks with other materials. The House voted 94-3 for the measure.
The Senate already has agreed to the bill, but it heads back to that chamber for approval of a provision that would allow the state Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to prohibit supplemental materials it deems inappropriate. Nevers said he will ask the Senate to approve the amendment. He stressed that the amendment does not require BESE to review all the materials. The state board would only step in if someone raised a question about whether the material was appropriate.
Supporters say the bill -- titled the "Louisiana Science Education Act" -- is designed to promote critical thinking, strengthen education and help teachers who are confused about what's acceptable for science classes.
"It basically protects teachers to be able to teach controversial subjects in science without looking over their shoulders," said Rep. Frank Hoffmann, R-West Monroe, who handled the bill in the House. He also said the bill was not aimed at promoting any religious doctrine.
Earlier we had criticized the AP in Louisiana for its reporting about this issue. It's nice to see some improvement.