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Finally! Climate Change Introduced to U.S. Science Curriculum

Good news and bad news.

The good news is that U.S. students will for the first time receive instruction on climate change following the adoption last Tuesday of new science education guidelines. The guidelines also take a firm stand that children must learn about evolution, the central organizing idea in the biological sciences for more than a century. (Even though some extreme right-wingers choose to deny that reality.)

The bad news is that states are not required to adopt these standards, even though 26 states, including Arizona, California, Iowa, Kansas and New York, have committed to seriously considering them.

The Next Generation Science Standards are the first broad national recommendations for science instruction since 1996. They were developed by a consortium of 26 state governments and several groups representing scientists and teachers.

The consortium said the guidelines were intended to combat widespread scientific ignorance, to standardize teaching among states, and to raise the number of high school graduates who choose scientific and technical majors in college.


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