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The British Centre for Science Education (BCSE)

csicop.org

December 11, 2006

The British Centre for Science Education (BCSE) is a newly formed organisation with the primary purpose of stopping the teaching of Creationism in UK state schools. Our main role is to act as a coordinating group, providing support to other groups and individuals who share our purpose, and to develop and implement activist tactics to achieve our purpose.

The BCSE is fully supported by its members throughout the UK, and draws on the experience and expertise of like minded professional people resident in North America, Australia, South Africa and continental Europe. Our members come from a broad variety of fields - science, business, theology, education, academia, engineering, IT and research. We have two things in common - knowledge of the creationist movement and a deep concern for the proper science education of children.

BCSE is a part of the broader international campaign against Creationism. The creationist movement itself is international with strong connections in the USA, where much of the money comes from, and Australia. We believe that working with similar groups throughout the world considerably strengthens the organisation in terms of contacts, knowledge and expertise.

The United Kingdom is faced with a highly organised, well-funded coalition of fundamentalist Young Earth Creationist groups. These include, but are not limited to: Truth in Science, Answers in Genesis, the Emmanuel Schools Foundation, the Christian Institute, Creation Research UK, Genesis Agendum, the Creation Science Movement and the Biblical Creation Society.

The creationist movement receives money and assistance from other parts of the world including Australia, through Creation Ministries International and Creation Research International and the United States, through such organisations and individuals as Answers in Genesis, the Institute for Creation Research, the Discovery Institute, and Howard Ahmanson, the American billionaire recluse who also funds the Discovery Institute.

These organisations have long-established tactics for infiltration and are active in bringing bogus creationist science into the classrooms of British state schools, frequently without the knowledge of parents or local education authorities. The movement has already taken full control of three state schools and has the funding and intention to control many more.

They actively discredit or subvert the teaching of all subjects taught in schools that contradict their extreme fundamentalist religious opinions, which are based on strictly literal biblical interpretations. Most notably they state that all of science is wrong because it does not agree with their dogma that the world was created 6,000-10,000 years ago, there was a world-wide flood with dinosaurs on Noah’s Ark, and that these dinosaurs roamed the countryside in Tudor times.

The position has become so serious that two well respected and established British universities, Leeds and Leicester, are introducing compulsory remedial courses to undo the damage done.

We have built up a database of the structure and activities of fundamentalist organisations that are active in teaching creationism in UK schools, which will be available for use by the organisations we support. It will also be made available to: teachers and other educators; local education authorities; local and national politicians; students at universities with active fundamentalist staff; businesses recruiting from schools and universities; the media and trade unions and other professional bodies involved in science and education.

In September 2006, BCSE launched its first campaign to raise awareness of the problem of creationism in education.

Further information about the BCSE can be found on its website http://www.bcseweb.org.uk .