Wyo. Republican Fights Ban on Controversial Climate-Science Standards

"A Republican lawmaker in Wyoming is taking a stand in favor of teaching climate science in the classroom.

Republican state Rep. John Patton will introduce legislation early this week to overturn a statewide ban on a set of K-12 science-education standards that teach the scientific consensus on global warming.

The guidelines, known as the Next Generation Science Standards, have sparked controversy across the U.S. because they call on teachers to instruct students that climate change is real and caused by human activity, including the burning of fossil fuels. The science standards controversy is part of a much larger fight: Parents, teachers, and politicians are sparring nationwide over the question of how global warming should be taught in classrooms.

A patchwork of existing science-education standards across the country has created widespread disparities in the teaching of climate change in high school and middle school classes.

Thirteen states and the District of Columbia have so far adopted the Next Generation standards, which were finalized last year by a coalition of scientists and educators. But the guidelines have faced fierce political pushback in states such as Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Wyoming."

Clare Foran reports for National Journal December 22, 2014.

Source: National Journal, 12/24/2014