Creationism should be discussed in school science lessons, rather than excluded, says the director of education at the Royal Society.
Sure it should. "Hey, kids. Before we cover the dominant theory in biology today let's cover some of the failed ideas of the past and present. Open your books to page ID."
Rather than dismissing creationism as a "misconception", he says it should be seen as a cultural "world view".
Teachers should take the time to explain why creationism had no scientific basis, Prof Reiss said.
He stressed that the topic should not be taught as science.
Hmm. That sounds reasonable enough. It is a misconception, but one that can be corrected.
And what is it that a teacher should do if not teach these concepts? The problem they face is growing as:
"An increasing percentage of children in the UK come from families that do not accept the scientific version of the history of the universe and the evolution of species.
"What are we to do with those children? My experience after having tried to teach biology for 20 years is if one simply gives the impression that such children are wrong, then they are not likely to learn much about the science that one really wants them to learn.
Get in there and teach 'em. Show 'em what we know and how we know it. And:
He also added a clarification on his position regarding creationism in schools.
"Some of my comments about the teaching of creationism have been misinterpreted as suggesting that creationism should be taught in science classes. Creationism has no scientific basis.
Definitive and reasonable. How will the world respond?BBC NEWS | UK | Education | 'Creationism' biologist quits job
Lovely, people. Lovely.
BBC NEWS | UK | Education | 'Creationism' biologist quits job
"He is to return, full time, to his position as professor of science education at the Institute of Education."
The Royal Society reiterated that its position was that creationism had no scientific basis and should not be part of the science curriculum.
"However, if a young person raises creationism in a science class, teachers should be in a position to explain why evolution is a sound scientific theory and why creationism is not, in any way, scientific."
So: he's gotta go. But, anyway, what he said. Lovely, people.
Pharyngula: Royal Society statement regarding Professor Michael Reiss
Shame on the BBC - The Panda's Thumb