only genuinely scientific critiques of, or evidence for, any explanation of life on Earth, but not religious critiques (beliefs unverifiable by scientific methodology)." (See Teaching About Evolution and the Nature of Science, Appendices B and C, National Academy of Sciences, Washington, D.C., 1998.)

Some argue that "fairness" demands the teaching of creationism along with evolution. But a science curriculum should cover science, not the religious views of particular groups or individuals.

If evolution is taught in schools, shouldn't creationism be given equal time?

Some religious groups deny that microorganisms cause disease, but the science curriculum should not therefore be altered to reflect this belief. Most people agree that students should be exposed to the best possible scholarship in each field. That scholarship is evaluated by professionals and educators in those fields. Scientists as well as educators have concluded that evolution—and only evolution—should be taught in science classes because it is the only scientific explanation for why the universe is the way it is today.

Many people say that they want their children to be exposed to creationism in school, but there are thousands of different ideas about creation among the world's people. Comparative religions might comprise a worthwhile field of study, but not one appropriate for a science class. Furthermore, the U.S. Constitution states that schools must be religiously neutral, so legally a teacher cannot present any particular creationist view as being more "true" than others.

The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine
500 Fifth St. N.W. | Washington, D.C. 20001

Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use and Privacy Statement