"In Evolution Education, State Science Standards Matter"

Invoking the results of the recent NCSE/Penn State national survey of public high school biology teachers, NCSE's deputy director Glenn Branch emphasized "the importance of including a scientifically accurate and pedagogically appropriate treatment of evolution in state science standards" in a June 22, 2020, post on the National Science Teaching Association's blog.

Branch noted that the results of the survey, including the conclusion that the widespread adoption of the Next Generation Science Standards helped to drive improvements in evolution education, appeared "[j]ust as three states — Pennsylvania, South Carolina, and Texas — are engaged in the process of revising their state science standards."

"A lot is at stake" in these revision processes, Branch warned. "More than half a million students take a biology course in the public schools of Pennsylvania, South Carolina, and Texas every year, to say nothing of the millions of students across the country whose textbooks might be affected by the content of the Texas standards."

The results of the NCSE/Penn State survey are described in detail in Eric Plutzer, Glenn Branch, and Ann Reid's "Teaching evolution in U.S. public schools: A continuing challenge," published in Evolution: Education and Outreach, and discussed further in a post by Branch for the BMC On Society blog and in a commentary by Reid in Nature.

Glenn Branch
Short Bio

Glenn Branch is Deputy Director of NCSE.

branch@ncse.ngo

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