Evolution Becomes Issue in Hart County Schools

Evolution, a topic that provides an age old question.

But now to some it appears it's no longer a question.

"The fact that it's called evolution instead of the theory of evolution. In the past, even in our school system, we've taught it as a theory of evolution, but it keeps coming as evolution and not the theory of evolution and that disturbs me," said Hart County Superintendent Ricky Line.

Line does not like the blueprint the state released for its new high school science tests, because he believed it supports evolution as fact not a theory.

"It never says theory. The Commissioner states that it's going to be taught as a theory, but the blueprint does not say the theory of evolution. The theory says genetics and evolution over and over," said Line.

Not only does he question the topic itself, but also at the length it is to be covered.

In the blueprint 25-40 percent of the test is to be over genetics and evolution, a point that was raised by science teachers and content instructors at the school.

"20 percent of their grade is on this final, and we bought into that. The Commissioner asked that 20 percent be the standard model, and we went with that. A lot of districts went with 10 percent. Right now, I debate whether we should not have gone with 10 percent," said Line.

The state Education Department was off for the Governor's inauguration today, but state Education Commissioner Terry Holliday did release these statements.

"Evolution will not be taught as fact in Kentucky schools, and that the end-of-course-test is intended to show whether a student is ready for college.

"We want our kids ready for college and careers. I just have a little bit of trouble believing evolution is a fact. I have a lot of trouble believing that evolution is the fact we need to base our science upon," said Line.

And now the state will have to decide what facts to base science upon.

Now this is not set and will not be until 2012, but Line is concerned that this will be set as a standard. Ultimately, he wants there to be significant discussion before this is decided.

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