Though Indiana state senator Dennis Kruse (R) failed to pass his measure requiring schools to teach creationism alongside evolution, he hasn’t given up. Rather than another attempt at the creationist bill, Kruse, the chairman of Indiana’s Senate Education and Career Development Committee, plans to offer “truth in education” legislation.
The “truth in education” bill won’t mention religion, God, or Adam and Eve. Instead, the bill vaguely suggests that students challenge teachers and make them prove the truth. As Kruse’s colleague, Sen. Tim Skinner (D-IN), pointed out, this bill describes the basic interaction of teacher and student:
“If you’re teaching something, then a student could question that and say, you know, ‘How do you know that’s true?’ And so the teacher would have to come up with different sources, ‘This is why I think this is true,’” Kruse says.
Terre Haute Democratic Senator Tim Skinner says Kruse’s proposal is not something that needs to be mandated.
“If Senator Kruse had education experience he would know that students across the country are already doing that every day in the public school classroom,” Skinner says. “They question everything, and I think a teacher who’s actually doing their job will answer those questions.”
Kruse’s bill is similar to a Tennessee bill that was passed in April, which encourages students to question teachers on science and protects teachers from retribution if they choose to teach creationism. His former legislation was killed in the House, as House Speaker Brian Bosma (R-IN) believed it would result in costly legal battles. The creationist movement suffered a defeat in the courts last week, when a Louisiana judge decreed that Gov. Bobby Jindal’s (R-LA) program to give huge sums of taxpayer dollars to religious private schools that teach anti-evolution theories was unconstitutional.