The Win in Ohio

UPDATE 2: MP3 of Board debate on the motion

Update: Text of the motion is now below the fold

Ohio is no longer on the Disco Institute’s list of favorite states for pilgrimages. Late this afternoon, by an 11-4 vote, the Ohio State Board of Education stripped out the intelligent-design creationist “critical analysis of evolution” benchmark, indicator, and lesson plan from the 10th Grade Biology curriculum.

I do not yet have the exact text of the resolution – it was amended somewhat in flight, so I have to transcribe the recording to get the precise wording. But the resolution had four main parts: It’s below the fold.

  1. Eliminate the “critical analysis of evolution” benchmark and indicator from the Science Standards.

  2. Eliminate the “Critical Analysis of Evolution” model lesson plan from the Model Curriculum..

  3. Instruct the Achievement Committee (formerly the Standards Committee) to consider whether the benchmark, indicator, and lesson plan should be replaced with something more acceptable.

  4. Instruct the Ohio Department of Education to notify every school district in Ohio of these actions.

The press release of Ohio Citizens for Science, distributed immediately after the vote, is below the fold. Later tonight when I have transcribed the final form of the motion from the recording I’ll post that below the fold as well.

Text of the motion:

Resolution to Modify the Ohio State Science Standards and Model Curriculum

Resolved, that the Superintendent of Public Instruction be, and she hereby is, directed to take the following actions immediately:

1) Delete the model lesson plan, Critical Analysis of Evolution, from the state board-approved curriculum and remove its availability from print sources, technology sources, and any other Ohio Board of Education/Ohio Department of Education mechanism that makes it available for use.

2) Delete the following sentences from Grade 10 Life Science Benchmark H: “Describe how scientists continue to investigate and critically analyze aspects of evolutionary theory. (The intent of this benchmark does not mandate the teaching or testing of intelligent design.)”, and delete Indicator 23 in its entirety, and adjust all print sources, technology sources, and any other Ohio Board of Education/Ohio Department of Education documents to reflect the removal;

3) The Achievement Committee of the Sate Board of Education is charged to consider whether the deleted model lesson, Benchmark H and Indicator 23 shoud be replaced by a different benchmark, lesson, and indicator, and if so, to present any recommendation to the entire State Board for adoption;

4) Communicate the fact of the above actions to all public school superintendents and high school principals in Ohio.

Ohio Citizens for Science Press Release February 14, 2006 For Immediate Release

The Directors and members of Ohio Citizens for Science applaud the Ohio State Board of Education for removing the creationist material from the State Standards and Model Curriculum.

We are pleased that Members of the Board have affirmed the importance of honest science education in Ohio public schools, and we stand ready to assist the Board however we can in advancing that effort.

We are still vigilant, as are our allies. Efforts to undermine excellent science education will not stop here, and as Kansas learned to its regret, relaxation can be dangerous. We urge the Board, the Ohio Department of Education, and concerned citizens to continue to work to improve Ohio’s public schools