Bill hoping to repeal Louisiana Science Education Act fails but supporters optimistic

Thursday, April 19, 2012 - 5:39pm

BATON ROUGE, LA  — The House Education Committee has rejected a bill that would have overturned the Louisiana Science Education Act. House Bill 374 failed two-to-one.

The Louisiana Science Education Act was passed back in 2008 and allows instructors to teach various scientific theories including evolution and global warming.

Opponents of the act believe it allows creationism to be taught in the classroom.

"It opens the door for the unconstitutional teaching of creationism to be snuck into public school science classes under the guise of letting teachers provide supplemental materials to critique evolution with absolutely no oversight,” Zack Kopplin, Baton Rouge Magnet High School graduate and continued supporter of the bill, explained.

However, the Governor’s Office stands by the current law.

"Repealing the Science Education Act would show no benefit for children, has no evidence that it would improve educational outcomes across the state and all it would do is seemingly limit educators ability to teach other viewpoints in their classrooms," Russell Armstrong, representative with Governor Jindal’s Office, added.

Last year the Senate Education Committee voted against a similar bill that would have repealed the Louisiana Science Education Act. It failed with a vote of five-to-one.

Although the bill was defeated, those in support of the HB 374 say today was still a positive gain and a good stepping point for next year.

“It went incredibly well today,” Kopplin noted. “We came out here with the kids and scientist and we’ve obviously made an impression on the legislature if we’ve made this much improvement from one year to the next, so we’ll be back and hopefully sway them next year.”

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