HARRISBURG, Pa. – “Intelligent design” cannot be mentioned in biology classes in a Pennsylvania public school district, a federal judge said Tuesday, ruling in one of the biggest courtroom clashes on evolution since the 1925 Scopes trial.

Dover Area School Board members violated the Constitution when they ordered that its biology curriculum must include the notion that life on Earth was produced by an unidentified intelligent cause, U.S. District Judge John E. Jones III said. Several members repeatedly lied to cover their motives even while professing religious beliefs, he said.

The school board policy, adopted in October 2004, was believed to have been the first of its kind in the nation.

“The citizens of the Dover area were poorly served by the members of the Board who voted for the ID Policy,” Jones wrote.

The board’s attorneys had said members were seeking to improve science education by exposing students to alternatives to Charles Darwin’s theory of natural selection. Intelligent-design proponents argue that it cannot fully explain the existence of complex life forms.

The plaintiffs challenging the policy argued that intelligent design amounts to a secular repackaging of creationism, which the courts have already ruled cannot be taught in public schools.

The Dover policy required students to hear a statement about intelligent design before ninth-grade biology lessons on evolution. The statement said Charles Darwin’s theory is “not a fact,” has inexplicable “gaps,” and refers students to an intelligent-design textbook, “Of Pandas and People,” for more information.

Jones said advocates of intelligent design “have bona fide and deeply held beliefs which drive their scholarly endeavors” and that he didn’t believe the concept shouldn’t be studied and discussed.

But, he wrote, “our conclusion today is that it is unconstitutional to teach ID as an alternative to evolution in a public school science classroom.”

The controversy also divided the community and galvanized voters to oust eight incumbent school board members who supported the policy in the Nov. 8 school board election.


I still don’t see how that affects any Practical things. Plus Kids theses days don’t learn any thing other what they think apply to them.

Big Nutter
Has had too many Biology Classes about Human Reproduction…

Progress strikes again! Wohoo! :victoly:


1 point for science.

This whole debate is 1) ridiculous and 2) annoying. I’m happy that I don’t attend a US highschool :stuck_out_tongue:

I Also find it has no effect on mylife. I prefere FACTS (or Fact Proven Theory) not pure Theroy, taught.

Lack of US School knowallge: What it the Age range of the High School pupil, BTW? And can you skip that subject?

Firsly, nutter, the fact you say that means you understand nothing. Secondly, the avg age range for high school students is 14-18. Thirdly, no you can’t skip.

Hurrah, long live John E. Jones the Third!

If you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all.

[strike]I thought of Herbal Essences when I read the title.[/strike]


Edit: Funny quotes from the judge.,1280,-5492549,00.html

I thought that was apparent.

It just saddens me that we have to go this far to get rid of somthing so rediculous.

I am happy it got banned…which doesn’t surprise me when they named the textbook “From Panda to People”.

Hey, we’re all God’s children, you know?

Except for gay people, of course. And pro-choice people… And anyone who isn’t Catholic.

Wonderful news. I’m glad to see that people are working to distinguish real science from pseudo-science. Seriously, “some undefined force created us”? It’s in essence what they’re saying. They call that science?

It is in Kansas. They altered the state constititution to be able to say that.

When did they do this? I don’t keep up with US Dosmesic News/Laws that much. The Only thing I really know about Kansas involves a Dog Called Toto, and she wasn’t in Kansas anymore.

A couple months ago. They changed the definition of science was changed to include natural AND supernatural events.

They changed the definition of science was changed to include natural AND supernatural events.

That… makes me want to ram my head into a wall. Supernatural things have nothing to do with science since the word implies something that is above nature, ie. not possible to prove with scientific means. They need a COURT to tell them this?