Feb 01, 2011 2:36 AM GMT
Can't blame them, because they can't even enunciate the principles of evolution to their students!
The findings come at a time when reports that less than half of American students are proficient in science has focused a national spotlight on the inadequacies of science education in the nation's public schools.
Seventeen percent of teachers surveyed did not cover human evolution at all in their biology class, whereas a majority of teachers (60%) spent between 1 and 5 hours of class time on it.
At the opposite extreme, 13 percent of teachers explicitly endorse creationism or intelligent design, and spend at least one hour of class time presenting it in a positive light. An additional 5 percent reported that they support creationism in passing or when answering students' questions.
The remaining fraction of teachers, who Berkman and Plutzer dub the "cautious 60 percent," avoids choosing sides. Often these teachers have not taken courses in evolutionary biology and lack confidence in their ability to answer questions from skeptical or hostile students and parents.