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Hundreds protest controversial science proposal

Hundreds of people showed up to protest proposed science standards for students in New Mexico. Speakers told the Public Education Department the new proposal isn’t what they want for their state.

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The proposed science standards would remove mentions of global warming caused by man, as well as the age of the earth.

“You will become a farce. You will become the laughingstock of the academic world. You will condemn the next generation of New Mexico’s scientific hopefuls to the reject pile,” Rabbi Neil Amswych said.

“This bill doesn’t affect the people who are trying to implement it. This bill affects us. And we want actual science being taught in the classroom,” high school student William Binette said.

Students, teachers, parents and world-renowned scientists said there is no room for debate on scientific fact.

“The only debate or conversation needs to be around ‘How do we educate people to know the science?” Joan Brown said.

New proposed science standards in New Mexico would remove or lessen references to man-caused climate change, the age of the earth and evolution.

The proposal is a toned-down version of the nationally recommended Next Generation Science Standards, which include those missing references.

“The PED has deliberately chose to either remove or minimize references to these facts in its latest standards. To do this is literally the antithesis of science. It calls into question the entire academic integrity of the PED,” Amswych said.

The governor vetoed a bill that would have passed the NGSS.

PED said business, civic, teacher and superintendent groups created the new standards, but wouldn’t specifically say who.

PED Secretary Christopher Ruzkowski was not at the hearing Monday. KOAT asked whether the fact that every person there spoke against the proposal will make a difference, but the department didn’t answer that question.

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