Evolution and Critical Thinking

Tuesday, August 20th, 2013

If you are a teacher, school administrator, or parent of a Kentucky student, last night’s discussion on Kentucky Tonight may be of interest to you. The issue was the Next Generation Science Standards, which the state Board of Education approved several weeks ago. Those standards have several additional regulatory steps to pass before being implemented in our public schools.

A coalition of 26 states including Kentucky developed the standards; they identify science and engineering practices and content that all K-12 students should master. The Kentucky Department of Education says the science standards are internationally benchmarked, rigorous, research-based, and designed to prepare Kentucky students for college and jobs in the future.

But the standards are not without controversy. Some have questioned what the standards say about evolution and climate change. Last night, our Kentucky Tonight guests discussed the challenges of teaching evolution in school:

The Next Generation Science Standards also require instruction on scientific practices, including critical thinking and communication skills that students need for post-secondary success. According to the standards, these practices encompass the habits and skills scientists and engineers use every day. However, on Monday night’s program, the panelists disagreed about the nature of “critical thinking:”

The new science standards could be in Kentucky classrooms starting in the 2014-2015 school year.

Comments are closed.

600 Cooper Drive, Lexington, KY 40502 (859) 258-7000 (800) 432-0951