Is climate change education the new evolution, threatened in U.S. school districts and state education standards by well-organized interest groups? A growing number of education advocates believe so, and yesterday, the National Center for Science Education (NCSE) in Oakland, California, which fights the teaching of creationism, announced that it's going to take on climate change denial as well.
"It's not like we're bored," says NCSE Director Eugenie Scott: Five state bills that would allow teaching intelligent design in schools have already surfaced in 2012. But after hearing an increasing number of anecdotes about K-12 teachers being challenged about how they taught climate science to their students, she says she began to see "parallels" between the two debates --namely, an ideological drive from pressure groups to "teach the controversy" where no scientific controversy exists. To get expertise in this area, NCSE hired climate and environmental education expert Mark McCaffrey as its new climate coordinator and appointed Pacific Institute hydroclimatologist Peter Gleick to its board of directors.