Globally Warm Schools

, Santiago Leon, Leave a comment

As Global Warming becomes an issue in people’s lives, it has also become part of school’s curricula.

I recently learned that my boss’s son had an assignment and quiz in his Spanish class on Global Warming. In many of the questions students had to translate sentences from Spanish to English but with a Global Warming theme.

They even had to watch Al Gore’s movie, “Inconvenient Truth,” which has been a part of several school courses.

Teaching Global Warming in schools is widespread across the nation, especially providing materials like Gore’s film, argued Dr. Arthur Robinson of the Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine, who gathered signatures of about 30,000 scientists who argue against the alarmism over Global Warming.

In the state of California, a bill was passed that will require “climate change” to be among the science topics that all California public school students are taught. A final decision is still pending from Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.

The measure would also mandate that future science textbooks approved for California public schools include climate change as a topic to be examined.

In many school districts, not only are textbooks being provided, but Gore’s movie as well. In Ontario, Canada, the Halton District School Board has made An Inconvenient Truth available at schools and as an educational resource.

At a school in Vermont, a middle school math teacher used a portion of Al Gore’s documentary to illustrate linear equations. In the same school, an English teacher used the movie to spark opinion writing.

The film has also been made available as an educational resource in Argentina and other Latin American countries.

It will be also in the science curriculum for fourth and sixth-year students in Scotland.

Great historical heroes from school lessons on the 20st Century are also being replaced by this so called weather phenomena. Recently, Winston Churchill was axed from British school’s history lessons along with Hitler, Gandhi, Stalin and Martin Luther King, Jr. In its place, they will be taught about global warming dangers.

But there are some schools restricting the amount of global warming being taught. Many are pressured from parents who are complaining about their children being taught global warming in schools.

A suburban school board in Seattle has restricted showings of Al Gore’s movie, requiring that it be balanced with an adequate opposing viewpoint. The decision was sparked by complaints from parents who said their children were taking the film as fact after viewing it at school.

In England, Stewart Dimmock is trying to prevent Al Gore’s opus from being forced on English children. One of his arguments is using a law in Great Britain prohibiting the “promotion of partisan political views in the teaching of any subject in the school.”

The National Science Teachers Association, possibly the largest organization of science teachers in the world, turned down an offer from the film’s producers for 50,000 free DVDs for classroom use. The association mentioned in a press release that it didn’t want to be seen as politically endorsing the film or to open itself to requests from other special interests.

Getting your work approved is a lengthy process in the science community. It could even take years. “What happens in science is you do your work, you do experimental work, you do ethical work, you publish, and you go through the peer review process where a few people comment so that you don’t publish nonsense,” Dr. Robinson explains. “Everybody reads it, some of it is good and some of it is bad. That evaluation is done by the readers and then scientists adopt the things that they find useful to them.”

Dr. Robinson argues that the scientific method got turned on its head in the debate over Global Warming.

“The 1997 Kyoto agreement that limited greenhouse gases got approved by a majority of votes,” says Robinson, “There’s no consensus, and therefore the science must be examined and it’s not being examined. The process used is simply unprecedented and wrong because the scientists that they are pointing at haven’t proved the reports they issued,” Dr. Robinson said of the so-called experts the UN lined up.

Among the thousands that signed Dr. Robinson’s petition, about 9,000 were PhD’s. The OISM made sure that every signature was valid, Dr. Robinson promises.

The Petition Project also points out that the claim of “settled science” and an overwhelming “consensus” in favor of the hypothesis of human-caused global warming and consequent climatological damage is wrong. According to the OISM, no such consensus or settled science exists, a claim supported by scientists who signed the petition.

Robinson believes everybody should read the facts, “I think in my own opinion, one of the problems in this debate [Global Warming], is people are not reading the facts instead listening to experts. So experts here and there, who have the best forensic skills, the best debating skills, or who gets the most press, this is silly. Facts are not complicated. The important thing is, read it yourself.”

Santiago Leon is an intern at the American Journalism Center, a training program run by Accuracy in Media and Accuracy in Academia.