Monday, March 10, 2008

Oklahoma turns to relativistic, post-modern theocracy

The Oklahoma state legislature is in the process of passing a bill that codifies a student's right to remain ignorant - so long as they have a religious reason for doing so.

From ERV:

The bill requires public schools to guarantee students the right to express their religious viewpoints in a public forum, in class, in homework and in other ways without being penalized. If a student’s religious beliefs were in conflict with scientific theory, and the student chose to express those beliefs rather than explain the theory in response to an exam question, the student’s incorrect response would be deemed satisfactory, according to this bill.
Yow. So as long as you say your God told you that 1 + 1 = 3, you get to have the right answer.

From the actual text of the bill, HB2211:
Students may express their beliefs about religion in homework, artwork, and other written and oral assignments free from discrimination based on the religious content of their submissions. Homework and classroom assignments shall be judged by ordinary academic standards of substance and relevance and against other legitimate pedagogical concerns identified by the school district. Students shall not be penalized or rewarded on account of the religious content of their work. (my bold)
I think Oklahoma's in for some good, old-fashioned grade inflation.
"No, all of my answers on all of my tests are divinely inspired. I get an A+"
I can't wait until some Buddhists, Sikhs and Rastafarians sue for their right under this law to answer their own creation stories in science class. I find this bill *very* funny.

Clearly, the good Oklahoma Legislature isn't busy with anything important.



The Ridger, FCD said...

Correct me if I'm wrong, but if this bill says "Homework and classroom assignments shall be judged by ordinary academic standards" then you can still flunk the kid who writes "God did it" as his answer. Not because he wrote "God" but because he didn't write whatever he was supposed to.

This seems, really, to be there to allow a student to say "But my religion tells me this answer is false." without failing. That's not good, maybe, but it's not so bad as it's being painted.

The Factician said...

I'm not sure I'm understanding you. Case #1: Child writes "God did it". Child fails.

Case #2: Child writes "God did it". Child fails. Child goes to court and says, "But the law says I can write anything that's in accordance with my religion". Child passes, and wins court costs.

I'm not sure I see much of a difference between #1 and #2. In fact, I would think many school districts would say that they don't want to have a court case, err on the side of caution, and give children full points for "Cthulu did it." or "Thor did it" without going to court over it.