The process began in July, when the board convened a teacher committee that recommended the deletion of several high school science standards, including four controversial biology standards they said would be too complex for students to understand. In their recommendation for deleting a clause requiring students examine explanations on the "sudden appearance" of organism groups in the fossil record, they included the note, "Not enough time for students to master concept. Cognitively inappropriate for 9th grade students."As I wrote a bit back, Barbara Cargill has, in recent years, been less vocal about her support for creationism and intelligent design, but has always supported the range of Wedge Strategy ideas promoted by the Intelligent Design movement, including “teach the controversy,” “teach the full range of scientific views,” and teach the “strengths and weaknesses” of evolution.
Republican board member Barbara Cargill led the charge Wednesday to keep three of those four standards in some form — arguing that they would actually help students better understand the science and keep teachers away from creationist ideas.
The board members have also bought into the idea that fossil forms appear in the geological record fully-formed, a notion completely debunked by Don Prothero.