To: Members of the Science Work Group who developed the 1982 revision of the Science Course of Study

We, the undersigned members of the Auburn University faculty in the sciences, are writing to express our dismay at the action of your committee in removing references to standard topics and concepts in the fields of biological and earth sciences from the Alabama Course of Study of Science.

Recent reports from study groups have emphasized the great deficiencies in science education across the nation. We who teach the graduates of Alabama high schools are particularly aware that our state is no exception. Lawmakers and civic and business leaders alike agree that Alabama must develop "high­tech" industries if we are to prosper or even keep up with our neighbors economically. Yet we are seeing the undermining of teaching of science in the public school to such an extent that few of our best and brightest students are likely to be directed toward careers in science and engineering. Those who are will enter college woefully unprepared to think scientifically and lacking the basic acquaintance with current ideas and facts in science on which a college teacher expects to build.

The signers of this letter represent a wide spectrum of religious beliefs as well as a wide variety of scientific disciplines. Our concern is not with the beliefs of individuals, but with what is genuine science, and that Alabama students be exposed to the scientific information and ideas on which the modern technological world is based. The Course of Study as currently stated gives so much leeway that a course called "biology" or "earth science" could be taught with no scientific content at all. We must not handicap Alabama students with that possibility!

We do not know how you voted on the question of removing terms relating to evolution, the history of the earth, and the age of the universe from the Course of Study. We do know that standard parliamentary procedure allows one who voted for a motion to move for its reconsideration. We urge you to take this or whatever other means lie at your disposal to reconsider the damaging position previously taken -- for the sake of Alabama young people and the welfare of our State as a whole.

Passed by the University Senate.

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