On Creationism in School Textbooks

Whereas the principles and concepts of biological evolution are basic to understanding science; and

Whereas students who are not taught these principles, or who hear "creationism" presented as a scientific alternative, will not be receiving an education based on modern scientific knowledge; and

Whereas these students' ignorance about evolution will seriously undermine their understanding of the world and the natural laws governing it, and their introduction to other explanations described as "scientific" will give them false ideas about scientific methods and criteria,

Therefore be it resolved that the Central Conference of American Rabbis commend the Texas State Board of Education for affirming the constitutional separation of Church and State, and the principle that no group, no matter how large or small, may use the organs of government, of which the public schools are among the most conspicuous and influential, to foist its religious beliefs on others;

Be it further resolved that we call upon publishers of science textbooks to reject those texts that clearly distort the integrity of science and to treat other explanations of human origins for just what they are -- beyond the realm of science;

Be it further resolved that we call upon science teachers and local school authorities in all states to demand quality textbooks that are based on modern, scientific knowledge and that exclude "scientific" creationism;

Be it further resolved that we call upon parents and other citizens concerned about the quality of science education in the public schools to urge their Boards of Education, publishers, and science teachers to implement these needed reforms.

Adopted at the 95th Annual Convention of the Central Conference of American Rabbis, 18­21 June 1984, at Grossinger's, New York.

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