Thursday, November 02, 2006

unhappy hour

The Times reports that Lady Warnock says the new GCSE syllabus "encourages a view that science is just one of many ways of finding out about the world, and that its claims are as open to challenge as those of any interested pressure group," creating debates that are "more suitable for the pub than the school room".

Are we to leave this unchallenged? What's wrong with the pub as a place to discuss science? Cafe Scientifique volunteers, including myself, would contest the idea that one cannot be serious about science outside the schoolroom or laboratory.

Those who object to the practice of challenging science's claims have forgotten the motto of the Royal Society. Goodness me, do we *really* need to dust off Stephen Jay Gould's point about 'Nullius in verba' yet *again*? It is about rejecting dogma, not words.


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