Three proposed climate change education bills die in Connecticut

Connecticut state capitol.

Three proposed bills on climate change education — one opposing it; two supporting it — died in the Connecticut legislature when a deadline for bills to be reported out of committee passed.

Proposed House Bill 5063 (PDF), if enacted, would have revised "the climate change curriculum [sic: presumably "standards"] to add a requirement that students are exposed to the debate and research concerning the amount and effects of anthropomorphic [sic: presumably "anthropogenic"] carbon dioxide levels." The bill was proposed by John E. Piscopo (R-District 76), a previous sponsor of similar legislation, as NCSE previously reported.

Proposed House Bill 5271 (PDF), if enacted, would have required that "the climate change curriculum in the Next Generation Science Standards be taught as part of the state-wide science curriculum for public schools and that such teaching begin in elementary school." Connecticut adopted the NGSS in 2013 and subsequently enacted a bill including the same requirement as House Bill 5271, as NCSE previously reported.

Proposed House Bill 6396 (PDF), if enacted, would have prohibited local and regional boards of education from punishing or restricting educators with regard to "teaching about subjects in which ideological differences of opinion exist." Climate change is cited as such a subject, and the sponsor, Christine Palm (D-District 36), previously sponsored a string of bills aimed at supporting climate change education in Connecticut.

Dueling climate change education legislation, such as NCSE's Glenn Branch described in his 2019 article "Science Teachers in the Hot Seat," seems to be a recurring feature in Connecticut.

Glenn Branch
Short Bio

Glenn Branch is Deputy Director of NCSE.