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Take the time to review what your children are learning in their science classes. Discuss your concerns with their teachers. Ask for a copy of the curricula used by the school.
Below are more ways to advocate for better science education.
Tips for Contacting Your Representatives
Contacting an elected official through correspondence or phone calls can be a very effective way of advocating for an issue.
The types of contact in order from most effective to least effective are as follows:
While personal communication is obviously best, any contact is worthwhile. When contacting your representative, the following guidelines may be helpful:
(The above borrowed from the TFN Action Center.)
Upcoming SBOE Meetings
We encourage all concerned parents and teachers to contact the SBOE member for their district. You can find who represents you on the SBOE by entering your address or Zip code on this search page: Who Represents Me? Their contact information is listed here. Learn more about your SBOE representative.
Attend the meetings of the SBOE and provide public testimony on the issues you're concerned about. The more people testify, the more it helps increase the pressure on the swing votes on the board who may be more likely to vote favorably if they perceive that there is broad public support for doing so. (Note that the SBOE has rules for public testimony.)
Texas revises its science standards known as the Science TEKS once every ten years.
The SBOE adopted new science TEKS on March 27, 2009. These TEKS will be used by teachers and textbook publishers until the next revision cycle in 2018-2019 replaces them for school years starting in 2020.
The science TEKS will be used by textbook publishers to include material for students to learn. Given the unscientific amendments made by the SBOE in January and March, 2009, it will be important to examine their treatment of these items.
The SBOE will be dealing with supplemental materials for the science TEKS in their July 20-22, 2011, meetings.
Find your Texas State Senator and Texas State Representative by entering your address or Zip code on this search page: Who Represents Me?.
Attend meetings of the House Committee on Public Education and provide public testimony. This committee has oversight responsibility for the SBOE and the TEA.
Visit the Texas Legislature Online to learn about other legislative committees and activities.
The Governor of Texas appoints the Chair of the SBOE and the Commissioner of Education, subject to Senate approval. Let the Governor know if you have issues with the job being done by the SBOE chairperson or the Commissioner of Education. Let your Senator know if you oppose the appointment.
The reason anti-science forces have made progress in the last 10-15 years is that they are motivated and active.
Writing letters to the editor of your local newspaper is a great way to help your local community understand the issues. People really do read letters to the editor. When a science education issue makes news, you can be sure that those who are uncomfortable with science are going to write in, so it's important for you to write in as well with your pro-science views. Letters to the editor are generally very short – 150 to 200 words at most – so they don't take long to write, and they can reach a lot of people.
Texas Citizens for Science (TCS) is a statewide, grassroots organization dedicated to maintaining the professionalism of science education in Texas public schools, the integrity of science in the Texas public school curriculum, and the accuracy of science in Texas government agencies and institutions.
TCS members include both working scientists and citizens interested in preserving the quality of science education in Texas. TCS is modeled after the successful Kansas Citizens for Science and Ohio Citizens for Science, and organized for the same reason they did: to oppose the organized forces of unreason in Texas that wish to degrade the quality of science education in our schools and ignore the use of accurate science in state government agencies.
Visit the Texas Citizens for Science website.
The Texas Freedom Network (TFN) advances a mainstream agenda of religious freedom and individual liberties to counter the religious right.
Founded in 1995, the Texas Freedom Network is a nonpartisan, grassroots non-profit organization of more than 28,000 religious and community leaders. Based in Austin, the Texas Freedom Network acts as the state’s watchdog, monitoring far-right issues, organizations, money and leaders. The organization has been instrumental in defeating initiatives backed by the religious right in Texas, including private school vouchers, textbook censorship and faith-based deregulation.
Visit the Texas Freedom Network's website.
Sign TFN's Stand Up For Science petition.
The National Center for Science Education (NCSE) provides information and advice as the premier institution dedicated to keeping evolution in the science classroom and creationism out.
The NCSE, founded in 1981, is a not-for-profit, membership organization providing information and resources for schools, parents and concerned citizens working to keep evolution in public school science education.
The NCSE engages in a number of activities advancing two primary goals: improving and supporting education in evolution and the nature of science, and increasing public understanding of these subjects. This work is supported primarily by membership contributions, with some additional assistance from grants.
The NCSE educates the press and public about the scientific, educational, and legal aspects of the creation and evolution controversy, and supplies needed information and advice to defend good science education at local, state, and national levels. The NCSE's 4000 members are scientists, teachers, clergy, and citizens with diverse religious affiliations.
The purpose of the Center for Inquiry (CFI) is to contribute to the public understanding and appreciation of science and reason, and their applications to human conduct.
The Center for Inquiry is a transnational nonpartisan, nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization that encourages evidence-based inquiry into science, pseudoscience, medicine and health, religion, ethics, secularism, and society. The Center for Inquiry is not affiliated with, nor does it promote, any political party or political ideology.
Through education, research, publishing, and social services, it seeks to present affirmative alternatives based on scientific naturalism. The Center is also interested in providing rational ethical alternatives to the reigning paranormal and religious systems of belief, and in developing communities where like-minded individuals can meet and share experiences.
Visit the main Center for Inquiry's website.
Visit the Austin Center for Inquiry's website.
The Clergy Letter Project is an endeavor designed to demonstrate that religion and science can be compatible and to elevate the quality of the debate of this issue.
Ways to help:
To learn more about The Clergy Letter Project and Evolution Weekends, please visit The Clergy Letter Project's website.